W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-validator@w3.org > August 2005

Re: Error Message Feedback

From: Jukka K. Korpela <jkorpela@cs.tut.fi>
Date: Wed, 10 Aug 2005 08:50:28 +0300 (EEST)
To: www-validator@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.GSO.4.63.0508100835570.15637@korppi.cs.tut.fi>

On Tue, 9 Aug 2005, Ritchey Mulhollem wrote:

> Making rows and cols a required attribute of a textarea is pointless because 
> the style sheet over rides it!!  Rows and Cols should be depricated because 
> the use of CSS makes them an obsolete hold over.

Your opinions on what _should_ be required is immaterial in validation, 
which works purely on the formal syntax definition, the DTD. If you wish 
to use modified syntax rules, create a DTD of your own. It isn't really 
that difficult, see
http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/html/own-dtd.html

Of course, your document would not comply with HTML specifications then -
a customized DOCTYPE declaration alone causes that.

Moreover, this would not change the way browsers behave. The behavior of a 
browser in the absence of required attributes is not specified in the 
specification and should be treated as unpredictable, though sometimes it 
is, in practice, a predictable mess. Style sheets are an optional feature 
and might not be supported by a browser, or the support might be disabled 
in a browser.

> Why force me to write <textarea class="textarea" rows="0" cols="0">  all the 
> time???  It's a waste of bandwidth!!

If you care about bandwidth at _that_ level, go ahead and remove
the quotation marks too. ;-) Seriously, the amount of characters in such 
markup is completely irrelevant in practice. How many textarea elements 
have you got on a page?

Using rows="0" cols="0" means, by the specification, that the visible size 
of the area is zero rows and zero columns. This is rather pointless; 
moreover, browsers actually get this wrong and use some (small) default 
size instead. Including _wrong_ attribute value just to please a validator 
is worse than pointless; I don't think you should use a validator if 
that's what it leads you to.

-- 
Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
Received on Wednesday, 10 August 2005 05:50:34 GMT

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