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Re: [css3-values] Physical length units

From: Christoph Päper <christoph.paeper@crissov.de>
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 2012 15:18:21 +0100
Message-Id: <7EDA55E2-BB7A-4881-AAC4-C04C9590F1F0@crissov.de>
To: www-style list <www-style@w3.org>
Boris Zbarsky:
> 1)  Make 12pt actually be 1/6 of a physical inch.
>     This has been tried, and it breaks pages.
> 2)  Make 12pt actually be 16px but make other "physical" units not match pt.
>     So 1in would not be 72pt.
>     This also breaks some pages (…)
> [2*)] you make 12pt be 16px and 1in be 72pt but leave 1cm as a physical cm (…)
> 3)  Make 12pt be 16px and change all other physical units to match.
>     This is also somewhat surprising, (…)

> The vast majority of people using units are not trying to achieve 1cm lines.  They're trying to size boxes to match fonts and the like.

Judging from past discussions, there is a significant number of people who want to use absolute units, because they want to size boxes that are not used for (visual) output only, but for (haptic) input, too. The size of a human fingertip doesn’t change with the viewing distance. (It does for pointing, but not for tapping and touching.)

The preferred unit of this camp is not ‘pt’ and ‘px’ neither. People use ‘mm’ and ‘cm’ or, in the US, ‘in’. Perhaps they would like a new unit ‘tip’ which is a physical centimeter or something close to it. Most of them would be fine with 2) or 2*), too.

> And they've been taught for literally decades that fonts are sized in pt. And they want to size their boxes in px.  And they _know_, again due to decades of experience, that 12pt == 16px.

Yeah, those are the morons we fixed the point-pixel relation for. Now we have to care about the demands of touchscreen people.
Received on Tuesday, 21 February 2012 14:18:53 UTC

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