W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-xsl-fo@w3.org > June 2003

Re: start-edge border and padding... where'd they go?

From: Mark Lundquist <ml@wrinkledog.com>
Date: Fri, 27 Jun 2003 12:23:59 -0700
To: www-xsl-fo@w3.org
Message-Id: <E7036D67-A8D4-11D7-9476-000A95908E0E@wrinkledog.com>

On Thursday, June 26, 2003, at 06:09 PM, G. Ken Holman wrote:

> At 2003-06-26 17:02 -0700, Mark Lundquist wrote:
>> So then, I'm still foundering in a sea of cluelessness.
>> On Thursday, June 26, 2003, at 04:29 PM, Mark Lundquist wrote:
>>> All right, I'm trying to learn XSL-FO, and I have this oh-so-very 
>>> simple test document:
> Simple, but written without an awareness of the constraints written 
> for XSL-FO.  In version 1.0 any out-of-line construct cannot have 
> borders and padding: regions, floats, footnote bodies, absolutely 
> positioned block containers.

That's fine, but my example in this question did not contain any of 
those constructs.  I did ask a different question about absolute 
positioning, but padding was not at issue in that question.

> A common misconception is that a reader will see "Common Border, 
> Padding and Background Properties" and think borders and padding 
> actually applies (gee, I wonder why??)

Exactly!  I've figured out that things are not what they seem to be, my 
naive assumptions are not borne out, etc. :-)... so now I'm trying to 
get my head around the details.  It doesn't mean what it seems to say, 
so what does it mean?  That's the stage I'm at right now...

> You haven't yet said what effect you want to achieve ... you've only 
> asked us to comment on what you are trying to code up.

I suppose so... probably trying to avoid the "cookbook" learning style, 
endemic to IT geekdom, of collecting incantations to cut and paste.  
And maybe an overreaction to the preponderance of books and articles 
that cater to this style.  If I'm going to do this stuff, I want to 
really understand it :-)

> Can you take a step back and describe what effect you would like to 
> see and someone may be able to show you the direction in which you 
> will get what results are available?

Okay.  My documents have a fixed layout (two pages at most).  They're 
templates that select content "pull-model" style using 
<xsl:call-template>.  There isn't much content, actually... a couple of 
small images and small blocks containing text.  These blocks have to be 
placed in fixed positions.  There is a fixed "margin" (let's say 10cm 
or so) within the page that none of the fixed positions encroach, but 
some are aligned to it, i.e. they abut one or two of the inner edges of 
the "margin".

Now then...

For a hacky reason that I don't care to go into, I can't use page-level 
margin properties.  It has to do with a background image.  But Mark 
doesn't want to talk about that right now :-).  And, I would like to 
understand if there is a general solution that can apply at any nesting 
level, i.e. doesn't rely on page-level properties.  And, there is the 
intuition that "if this isn't what padding is for, then what is it 
for?".  And, I've found something that doesn't work the way I think it 
does, which bothers me and makes me want to understand it.

You and others on this list have taught me how absolute-position works, 
so I now know how to achieve the desired effect by placing a block or 
block-container 10cm in from each edge of the page, and then in turn 
using absolute-position to place its children (For that matter, I could 
even do away with the containing block and simply fix everything 
relative to the page, but that's not as good a way to code it).  But if 
there is a way to do it with padding, I would still like to understand 
it, or else understand why the padding approach was wrong.

Received on Friday, 27 June 2003 15:23:58 UTC

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