Re: Comments URI Proposal

Susan Lesch wrote:

> What if CSS encouraged a comment authoring practice, and/or
> permitted use of a 'comment' property with a value holding a URI
> for an external comment file? Authors could place notes and
> commented-out sections there.

Todd Fahrner wrote:

>I'd also propose pseudo-standardizing the "colophon" class for HTML
>divisions, which would contain technical and other notes about the formal
>construction of the site. Its display property would generally be set to
>"none" initially, but users could choose to view it by setting its display
>property to "block", and perhaps its position to 0,0 in a personal
>stylesheet. Of course, there'd need to be a UI for this, as suggested in
>the CSS1 Recommendation. I'm at least mildly excited by the likelihood that
>the free Netscape source will result in less "passive" user interfaces.

I think both are excellent ideas. Our house style is to comment extensively
because we do pretty complex pages. While CSS will drastically reduce the
need for workarounds (and thus documentation of said workarounds) there's
still often a need to explain why something was built a certain way and to
flag areas that are going to be updated regularly. While this unfortunately
adds bytes, it's simply not practical for us in a production environment to
try and strip out all the comments from the  "live" version and keep it in
sync with a "production" version, especially for sites that are updated
regularly. Either method described above provides a way to shorten these
sorts of commenting within the "public" version of the file -- thus
shrinking file size.

Susan's method of an external comment file also has the advantage of
allowing authors to add comments that aren't necessarily viewable by the
public. For example, a particular explanatory reference could be behind a
passworded URL, allowing us to incorporate the reference as part of the
site's project documentation that we keep behind our development extranets.

George Olsen
Design Director/Web Architect                
2-Lane Media                                    
vox 310/473-3706 x2225                                      fax 310/473-6736

Received on Monday, 2 March 1998 21:00:43 UTC