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From Nicola Ken Barozzi <>
Subject Re: [RT] Getting rid of the table-based layout
Date Wed, 13 Nov 2002 14:50:45 GMT

Robert Koberg wrote:
>>-----Original Message-----
>>From: Nicola Ken Barozzi []
>>Sent: Wednesday, November 13, 2002 5:56 AM
>>Robert Koberg wrote:
>>>The tableless layout is much easier to change into many different views. In
>>>fact, I think the whole concept of how you use the word 'skins' leads to
>>>confusion. You are saying the XSL is the skin when it is more like
>>a skeleton or
>>>actually a bag of bones. The CSS is the skin. XSL=structure,
>>CSS=style. By going
>>>tableless you get closer to the separation of concerns ideal where you can
>>>change the entire layout just by dropping in a new CSS - no regeneration and
>>>possibly solely in the hands of a designer (though I have yet to
>>work with one
>>>who can actually use the power of CSS).
>>Skin is just more than appearance, it's also about functionality.
>>Skins in programs expose buttons that actually do stuff or can hide them
>>for simplified stuff.
> This is not my experience with skins. A skin only changes how it looks - it does
> nothing to the underlying functionality.

Look at the skins for Windows Media Player or AIM for example, they can 
reduce the overall functionality.

For example also for Forrest, we have skins that put the author on to, 
on the botton, add or not the email, or even change the email from 
name@domain to nameATdomain for anti spamming.

But I concede that the general perception of skin is about giving 
roughly the same stuff with a different appearance.

Although I fail to see how your CSS-only skin would make the pages 
viewable on WAP, which I'm doing right now for some internal intranet pages.

>>XSL gives you much more flexibility than CSS in this regard, and is the
>>only solution for some skinning needs.
>>Apart from the fact that server side XSL is still needed for a generic
>>cinversion system, I agree that we should in any way incourage and tout
>>the use of the forrest skin with custom CSS personalizations.
>>Maybe it's a terminology issue, right?
>>Now it's
>>CSS= personalization
>>But you say:
>>CSS = skin
> XSL = bones (and tendons, ligaments or maybe the tendons and ligaments are
> business logic :)
> If you drop a new CSS over the same XSL output you change the skin. Where does
> the XSL come in?
> I guess it is a terminology issue, but I do believe skins have nothing to do
> with functionality

Then we can say it's a terminology issue.

That said, I still need the possibility of specifying a set of XSLs that 
work on the output; one set would be the forrest system with the 
corresponding skins, one would be the ken-wap system, etc.

What name do you propose?

Nicola Ken Barozzi         
             - verba volant, scripta manent -
    (discussions get forgotten, just code remains)

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