[whatwg] Re: <section> and headings and other threads

Ian Hickson ian at hixie.ch
Thu Apr 7 16:11:32 PDT 2005

On Thu, 7 Apr 2005, dolphinling wrote:
> Suppose you have an outline like this:
> Section
>  |
>  +--A [...]
>  |  |
>  |  +--E
>  |     |
>  |     +--F
>  |     |
>  |     +--G
>  |
>  +--H
>     |
>     +-----I
>     |
>     +-----J
> ...where I and J are the same level as C, D, F, and G.

Same level in what sense?

> If there's no way to skip a heading level, then there's no way to convey 
> the fact that they're of the same importance.

Well, there is one way: nesting <section>s.

> One real-world example of this that I know of is 
> http://www.mozilla.org/projects/nspr/reference/html/, take a look at 
> chapter 3. Another example would be in taxonomy, where there are lots 
> and lots of sub- and supercategories, but all species should obviously 
> be the same heading level.

I don't think it's "obvious". Indeed I don't think it's true -- while I 
could see an argument for consistent styling of the species, I don't 
consider them to be the same level. In the outline above, I consider I and 
J to be different levels from F and G.

> In the absence of sub/superheadings (which IMO would be a much better 
> solution, but possibly wouldn't be able to be backwards-compatible (or 
> maybe they would, I haven't thought about it quite enough...)) there 
> needs to be some way to skip levels.

There are subheadings in HTML5. See the <header> element.

And there is a way to skip levels; the <section> element.

Are those solutions satisfactory, or do you still want the rank of 
<h1>-<h6> to imply missing sections?

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'

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