Haakon Wium Lie, Founder of CSS, Answers Some Questions
The current CTO of Opera Software, Haakon Wium Lie, also wears another hat--that of one of the founders of the web page formatting standard known as cascading style sheets (CSS). Lie took the time to answer some questions about CSS, and where he thinks it is headed.
When asked why a new method of displaying and navigating data was even needed for the web, Lie responded that by getting rid of the scrollbar, we enter a whole new paradigm. As he put it, " When you have a page in front of you it's a much more relaxed experience. The eye shifts, but the page stays the same. Moving from page to page by swiping seems like a more natural experience on tablets and even on PCs. If I tilt a tablet, the number of columns changes to fit the new dimensions and the text reflows. Instead of using a proprietary C++ program, you could make an app easily using HTML."
Speaking about the comparison of Adobe's CSS3 Regions proposal and how it compares to his own layout spec, Lie stated that "Adobe's CSS Regions and Exclusions are different and complimentary to this. And Regions is quite hard to do; it's got a long way to go. With ten lines of code, you can format using CSS Generated Content for Paged Media; Adobe is selling development tools for Regions and Exclusions. Adobe's spec doesn't offer navigation between pages using swipes or mouse drags as our proposal does. The CSS Working Group is very dynamic now, people want to pull it in many directions. Advanced layout is one area, but equally important is what we did with navigation."
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