Re: Media Queries & Details/Summary for extended descriptions


I hear you. User style sheets have been around, I used to use them until they were stopped being used. Actually, in this case, I believe it is not even the usage of user style sheets, but rather the usage of alternate style sheets that would be closer to the usage patterns we are talking about, but they also disappeared from usage. Alas!

We have to analyse the reasons. Of course, browsers' unwillingness to properly implement them is one, but there may be others; like the extreme and, frankly, arcane complexity of the Web page structures and resulting CSS that make the usage of, say, user style sheets extremely complex because most of the user have no understanding of what is happening. I have not followed the evolution of how these approaches became unused.

So what is next? What is the way of moving ahead?


> On 14 Feb 2016, at 13:25, Florian Rivoal <> wrote:
>> On Feb 14, 2016, at 19:42, Ivan Herman <> wrote:
>> Sigh. This stuff has a great potential, it would be a pity to let it go. It actually touches on a different area that the DPUB community also feels strongly about, namely the fact that in all ebook reader apps it is possible to change the font, the background colour, etc, of the display, whereas in browsers these facilities practically never exists. "Personalization", as we refer to it in our interest group.
> Facilities for changing the font, the background color, etc, exist in all browsers (except chrome which removed them not that long ago) in the form user style sheets. The UI is between horrible and non existent, but the mechanism for affecting the styling of the document has been in CSS since CSS 1.
> The kind of UI displayed by ebook readers is perfectly doable on top of user stylesheets. It's just that browsers don't care, as a streamlined UI seems to unlock much more market share that features and customization. Some disagree, and if you give a try to Vivaldi, they have a "page action" button that works sort of like that. But mainstream browsers are generally not going in that direction.
> I am very skeptical that a problem that seems to boil down to browsers not being interested in a feature can be solved by providing a different way of achieving the same goal, especially one that still leaves the UI up to the browsers.
> Offering hooks for more abstract preferences very well work, but for the more direct kind of changes, the technical problem was solved about 2 decades ago. The difficulty lies elsewhere.
> - Florian

Ivan Herman, W3C
Digital Publishing Lead
mobile: +31-641044153

Received on Monday, 15 February 2016 09:01:44 UTC