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Re: Black links in default.css (in CR-css3-page-20040225)

From: Bert Bos <bert@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 30 Aug 2004 13:49:52 +0200
Message-ID: <16691.5216.645621.695852@lanalana.inria.fr>
To: Susan Lesch <lesch@w3.org>
Cc: www-style@w3.org

Susan Lesch writes:
> Hello,
> This is a quick comment that I hope reaches you before the end of CR 
> for your CSS3 Paged Media Module [1]. First, this style sheet [2] is 
> beautiful and  readable now that text-align: justify is gone (was it 
> there earlier for CSS3 modules?).

That's a matter of taste :-)

But it is true that, as long as browser don't hyphenate, justification
often leads to lines  that   are    too     spaced      out.

> Would it be possible to restore the blue link color rather than hide 
> links in black? The body of W3C's work has blue links. If there is a 
> reason to use black, maybe you will recommend that all W3C TR style 
> sheets change.

Most of the links are automatically generated and thus there are quite
a few. Making them blue makes the text hard to read.

Moreover, the links aren't important enough for that much
highlighting. They are meant for people reading the text, not for
people reading it diagonally and are thus are better served with
something like italics than color. (But italics are already used, so
they are underlined, as is traditional for hyperlinks, even though
that highlights them too much as well.)

The blue would also interfere with the visibility of the section
headings, that are also blue. And links occurring inside something
else, such as a heading or a note, would change the color of that
something and thus destroy its meaning.

Maybe some other color is possible (gray?) for hyperlinks in the body
text, but since there are already many different colors with different
functions (blue headings, green notes, yellow and brown examples,
brown keywords, blue definitions...), I think there is no room for
more colors.

> [1] http://www.w3.org/TR/2004/CR-css3-page-20040225/
> [2] http://www.w3.org/TR/2004/CR-css3-page-20040225/default.css
> [3] http://www.w3.org/2004/02/02-pubrules.html#format

And about recommending this style to other spec writers: I don't know
what the typical density of hyperlinks in W3C specs is, what their
role in the text is and what other colors are in use, but for many of
the specs that I've seen, I think underlining links instead of making
them blue would indeed improve the readability.

  Bert Bos                                ( W 3 C ) http://www.w3.org/
  http://www.w3.org/people/bos/                              W3C/ERCIM
  bert@w3.org                             2004 Rt des Lucioles / BP 93
  +33 (0)4 92 38 76 92            06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex, France
Received on Monday, 30 August 2004 11:50:51 UTC

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