The Deprecated "start" Attribute and Validation
November 16, 2005 5:51 PM   Subscribe

Just completed a site, fully CSS for type, layout, print, XHTML, etc. Every page validates except for two. The reason. The start attribute is deprecated. Problem is, I can't find a replacement for it in CSS.

There seems to be some debate about this. Why is something that is semantic meant to be controlled by the code that governs the presentation of the content? I understand preventing the display of numbers in an ordered list, but is there a CSS method to designate what number to start with? I could only find debate about the subject but no solutions (well, no solutions that weren't overly elaborate and bizarre.)

Many of the pages in the site use ordered lists (for all the menus in fact, save the Wine List), but the pasta menus require the numbers to be visible. Anyone have any suggestions?
posted by juiceCake to Computers & Internet (10 answers total)
 
You may have read A List Apart's article on multi-column lists already, but I'll link it just in case. The upshot is that there is no solution to your problem that is simultaneously W3C valid, semantically pure, and plays well across browsers. The good news seems to be that you can get away with using start with a transitional doctype.
posted by gleuschk at 6:08 PM on November 16, 2005


Reading just the CSS spec I got as far as writing up a test page using 'counter-increment' just like the A List Apart folks do, and discovered that it doesn't work in Firefox 1.0.x.

(They are incorrect in that Firefox, at least, does have some support of the :before pseudo-element. It just doesn't do 'counter'.)

So yeah, definitely go with transitional and don't sweat it.
posted by nev at 6:13 PM on November 16, 2005


Not to be rude, but, after it validates, you might want to use a spell-check or a proof-reader -- just a quick look at that page reveals:

* Dialy
* Brocolli
* Jalepeno
* Ssparagus
posted by AmbroseChapel at 7:14 PM on November 16, 2005


Spelling will indeed be validated as well.
posted by juiceCake at 7:17 PM on November 16, 2005


Thanks all. It does indeed look like there isn't an elegant, as yet, solution to replace a rather simple function that has been deprecated. I'll make the changes as needed and have a good production meeting with the client. Cheers.
posted by juiceCake at 7:38 PM on November 16, 2005


If I can make one suggestion after visitng the site....

I do useability (and accessibility) work from time to time, and It would be really good to have the logo as a link to the home page. it took me a moment to find the home link.

Nice though :)
posted by lemonfridge at 3:39 AM on November 17, 2005


don't know if it's any help, and may be stating the obvious, but something i've been playing with recently is making a compliant web page and then running client side javascript to tweak it for particular browsers. it might seem overkill, but it's very flexible, gets the messing around off the server, lets you control precisely what changes are made for what client software, and fails safely (with a bit of care).

so in this case you could have un-numbered lists (or starting from 1) as the conforming basic page and then have a small script that modifies the dom to give the numbering you want for the popular browsers.
posted by andrew cooke at 5:20 AM on November 17, 2005


Thanks lemonfridge. Right now the logo is a background in CSS but that's a good suggestion.

And thanks andrew cooke. I'll go with the simpler solution of giving a transitional DTD to those two particular pages for the time being.
posted by juiceCake at 10:01 AM on November 17, 2005


If you don't expect to renumber the entries, you could just use two unordered lists and type the numbers in manually. Then you could publish the site, feel slightly ashamed, and get on with your life.
posted by joeclark at 5:42 PM on November 17, 2005


If you don't expect to renumber the entries, you could just use two unordered lists and type the numbers in manually. Then you could publish the site, feel slightly ashamed, and get on with your life.

Well the site has never hindered me getting on with my life anyway, nor would I feel ashamed in any manner. However, I prefer the computer to do the numbering for me.
posted by juiceCake at 10:24 AM on November 22, 2005


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