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Re: more CSS and tables

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Sat, 5 Jan 2002 20:13:18 -0500 (EST)
To: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-edapta@idyllmtn.com>
cc: Joe Clark <joeclark@joeclark.org>, WAI-IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0201052003260.15467-100000@tux.w3.org>
Well, I don't want to keep figuring out CSS layouts myself. If I wanted a
table-based layout that was complicated, I would pick up a WYSIWYG (What You
See Is vaguely related to What You Get) tool and do it - there are plenty of
them around (although Macromedia bought a patent it claims covers such tools
in the US and is suing another company distributing such tools in the US).

As you say, because ensuring cross-browser perfection of presentation is
harder in CSS, these tools often don't use CSS positioning yet (the actual
encoding is a lot easier).

My assumption is that people who are using version 3 of IE or Netscape or
Opera, or other browsers that don't support CSS, don't really care about
presentation above all else, so I am less concerned about how things look in
those browsers - so long as the elements on a page can be identified I am

Real World Adaptive technology is almost at the stage where it handles tables
just fine. Just like people don't all upgrade their free browsers, they don't
or can't all upgrade their far more expensive technology. And given that I am
working with people who speak english as a third or fourth language, and
don't necessarily have the new adaptive technology available to them in their
own language at a price they can afford, I prefer to be conservative.

But then, I am working on sharing ideas, not sharing a look and feel, as my
primary goal. I am not nagging everyone to use CSS, I am pointing out why I
disagree with Kynn that tables are the best solution for older browsers. In
fact, I think it depends very much on the goals of the content you are trying
to present.



On Sat, 5 Jan 2002, Kynn Bartlett wrote:

  At 3:19 PM -0500 1/5/02, Joe Clark wrote:
  >I'm all for CSS layouts. I'm also all for table layouts. I use both,
  >actually. Someday, when I really figure out how to use CSS layouts
  >and all the browser bugs are worked out (all-stylesheet layouts are
  >ten times harder to get right cross-platform than tables), I'll
  >convert en masse. We have not reached that day, and nagging at
  >people to stop using tables for layout when CSS is so very difficult
  >and buggy *and* when real-world adaptive technology handles tables
  >just fine simply is not getting us anywhere.

  Joe and I agree 100% on this issue, I think. I agree with everything he
  wrote here.


Charles McCathieNevile    http://www.w3.org/People/Charles  phone: +61 409 134 136
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative     http://www.w3.org/WAI    fax: +1 617 258 5999
Location: 21 Mitchell street FOOTSCRAY Vic 3011, Australia
(or W3C INRIA, Route des Lucioles, BP 93, 06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex, France)
Received on Saturday, 5 January 2002 20:13:20 UTC

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