[Web4lib] no tables in CSS?

Thomas Dowling tdowling at ohiolink.edu
Thu Sep 21 09:25:51 EDT 2006

On 9/20/2006 6:45 PM, Paul F. Schaffner wrote:

> On Wed, 20 Sep 2006, Jonathan Gorman wrote:
>> I think this email list can be helpful with CSS questions as well.
> I'll take this as an invitation. I am new to CSS, since my job
> usually involves capturing information in markup, with little regard
> for how it might be displayed. But am I right in thinking that
> given an XML source (TEI-based XML, not XHTML), there is no way
> to style the XML with CSS so as to format a table properly with cell
> and row spans? That this was omitted from CSS2? And that the
> tables module for CSS3 has not yet reached the 'working draft' level?
> Or have I misunderstood?

I would consider row and column spans to be part of the content of the
table, so they'd be appropriately handled with structural rather than
presentational directives.  In an HTML+CSS document, this would come
down squarely on the HTML side.

CSS 2.1 section 17.5 says "Cells may span several rows or columns.
...Although CSS 2.1 doesn't define how the number of spanned rows or
columns is determined...a future update of CSS may provide a way to
express this".  <http://www.w3.org/Style/CSS/current-work> says "The
model in CSS3 will be the same as in CSS2, but described in more
detail," so it doesn't sound like this is the future update that will
add cell spanning.  Regardless, anything happening in CSS3 is years away
from support in mainstream browsers.

Thomas Dowling
tdowling at ohiolink.edu

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