[thelist] Re: Cranky Admins & Offlist Comments & Firetrace space...

Ben Henick persist1 at io.com
Thu Feb 28 17:14:35 CST 2002

On Thu, 28 Feb 2002, Nick Wilson wrote:

> I dont think the problem was with the OT post it was with the way that
> admin handled the situation.

Tip between my rant and my .sig.

Gah!  I hate meta-threads because they are neither on- nor off-topic, but
I feel the need to respond.

I for one have no issues with the way that Dan handled it, and wrote him
offlist to say so.

He was not addressing things in terms of 'it is unconscionably rude and
almost always offtopic to dicuss sex/politics/religion here' (though
that's true) - at least not as far as I saw.

The post that pushed his buttons pushed mine, too.  Those of you who've
spent any time on my site might be able to figure out why.

Mere rudeness is one thing.  Breaking ancient taboos that exist for the
best of reasons...

...Is another entirely.  There are certain lines that are simply NOT to be
crossed without prior consent, and Dan was IMO addressing such a

I'm as guilty as anyone in regard to declaring the Emperor to be wearing
his birthday suit, but I generally try to do it in an appropriate context.

I'm glad that we have an admin who's not afraid to stand up and make it
crystal-clear that grenade-lobbing is emphatically a Bad Idea.  (I'd
provide some emphasis of my own, but the emphasis is part of Dan's

<tip type="Tableless layout" author="Ben Henick">

If you had the misfortune to start doing Web work after 1996 or so, you
likely have a dim-at-best memory of the days when most pages were
completely bereft of tables and table-based layout.

But if you've got any of those memories, they're essential to creating
effective table-based layouts.


Before tables became the Web's pick-and-shovel, a document's layout was
reflected entirely by its source order.

CSS frees those who know how to use it from *that* restriction, but the
March of Progress changes not a jot the fact that we can once again start
writing markup that has a sane source order.  Which is important, for the
sake of backwards compatibility, document portability, and search

So - you take your comp.

You figure out how you'd arrange the content if it had to be done in a
completely linear way.

And you arrange it that way, at least where the markup is concerned.

When you're done, you can start writing your CSS to fit.

I grant that this Order of Operations can be a huge PITA at first.  But
once you've gotten it down, you'll wonder what the big deal was.


Ben Henick
Web Author At-Large              Managing Editor
http://www.io.com/persist1/      http://www.digital-web.com/
persist1 at io.com                  bmh at digital-web.com
"Are you pondering what I'm pondering, Pinky?"
"I think so, Brain, but... (snort) no, no, it's too stupid."
"We will disguise ourselves as a cow."
"Oh!" (giggles) "That was it exactly!"

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