[thelist] Coding standards.... [headers]

Barney Carroll barney at textmatters.com
Mon Dec 11 03:19:52 CST 2006

Julian Rickards wrote:
> My position is that, in the same way that you can't have multiple <title>
> tags on a page to represent its multiple purposes, you shouldn't have
> multiple <h1> tags.

Are you saying that h1 is a reinstatement of the title? ...But somehow 
not superfluous? I'm playing a bit of the devil's advocate here because 
that's by and large how I use h1s. But I've also been known to have

<title>[site name] - [page name]</title>
<div id=header>
   <h1>[site name]</h1>
   <h2>[section name]</h2>
   <h1>[page name]</h1>...

Joel D Canfield wrote:
 >> it is fine to use H1, H3, H2 if that's how your document flows.
 > how would a document flow like that, semantically? how would you get
 > to the third most important point before the second most important
 > point?

'Headers' are not 'points'. Someone earlier made a joking reference to 
the use of h3 to make text bold. The fact that HTML has (often very 
confusing - and rightfully so) distinctions like em, strong, ul, ol, h# 
etc. are to help it accommodate all the various aspects of document 
writing from human culture, even prior to the w3c.

I feel generally there is too much of a feeling that the form of writing 
that must/can be used on the web must be sensitive to the way the DOM is 
constructed, to logical XML trees etc... And this is spitting in the 
face of the fact that SGML and DHTML have come so far to accommodate 
writing as an inherently complex thing.

1) No matter of intuition as to web standards and technologies will 
teach you good English. I think vice-versa would be closer to the truth, 
but still a fundamentally over-simplistic concept.

2) There is no 'tree' of header elements. The DOM can be perceived as a 
tree, but p objects are not 'contained' within their over-arching h#, 
nor are lower h#s contained within the next lowest h# above.


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