[whatwg] Comments on styling form elements

Ian Hickson ian at hixie.ch
Thu Dec 16 14:38:54 PST 2004

On Tue, 14 Dec 2004, Ryan Cannon wrote:
> One subtle grammar point: the sentence, "It is recommended that form 
> controls remain faithful to the look and feel of the system's global 
> user interface, though." Should omit the word "though."

Fair point, changed-

> Also, it would appear that the absence of any guidelines here would 
> cause more problems than the simple addition of new input types would 
> solve. For example, some UAs regard the background of a radio button as 
> the color inside the button, while others color the box surrounding the 
> button. Currently, web designers are hard pressed to integrate forms 
> into design, as some elements can be styled and others cannot. WHATWG 
> should consider some general language concerning the guidelines of how 
> widgets interact with stylesheets.

Yeah, we'll probably do that as part of the Web Controls 1.0 spec.

> [various proposals for describing controls in CSS]

The problem is that on several platforms (such as Windows XP, GTK2, or 
MacOS X), custom themes can radically change the appearance of controls 
well beyond what can be expressed in CSS without using the CSS3 
'appearance' property.

I agree that the specs should define this better, but that will be done in 
Web Controls 1.0, not in Web Forms 2.0. The latter is more concerned with 
the functional aspects than the stylistic aspects.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
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