W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > September 2006

Re: Sizing

From: David Woolley <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
Date: Sun, 17 Sep 2006 16:55:17 +0100 (BST)
Message-Id: <200609171555.k8HFtHk03841@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
To: www-style@w3.org

> a)  A HTML page looks completely different on my 1600*1200 screen than on an
> A4 page or a 1024*768 screen. This makes it impossible to show a document to

That's correct.  HTML is not a page description language.  Unfortunately
designers often try to use it as a poor man's PDF, rather than using 
designs that tolerate this variability.

> be printed the way it will be printed. There should be an option to scale
> down a document dynamically, e.g. to viewport width.

Again, the need for this arises from bad design.  It does frustrate me
that most pages will not print portrait without clipping and often
won't print landscape, basically because the designer has forced an
absolute width and hasn't even considered that anyone might want to print
(vanishingly rare are pages where the navigation is automatically 
excluded when printed).

> b)  It's impossible to scale images down. In CSS you can't define that
> (dynamically loaded) images should display in 50 % of their intrinsic size
> (which is pixels).

However, you generally know the intrinsic size, so you can do the calculation

> b)  Currently browsers use their intrinsic scaling to keep image/text size
> relation consistent between screen/printer. Instead of using their own magic

Ideally 1:1, although one should not expect an exact print image.

> > 72pt = 2.54cm by definition, so pt:px and cm:px cannot be defined
> > independently.
> The author doesn't, but the browser has. This rule length option should be
> used only by browsers to inject proper default scaling to images. I don't
> get you last sentence. Why should they be defined independently? A rule like
> "300px" replaces "500cm", AFAIK.

What I am saying is that once the mapping of pt to px is defined, the
mapping of cm to px has only one possible value.
Received on Sunday, 17 September 2006 15:57:51 UTC

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