Re: HTML authoring tool for creating HTML Company Newsletter?

Subject: Re: HTML authoring tool for creating HTML Company Newsletter?
From: Arlen -dot- P -dot- Walker -at- jci -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2000 11:17:36 -0600

>but it is difficult to format columns in FrontPage.

As I'm sure you've heard by now, it is difficult to format columns in HTML,
period. At least the traditional idea of text columns, reading down one
column and then continue at the top of the next.

HTML doesn't do that, and CSS in any of its incarnations won't support it.
Now, if you want to get out your Javascript toolbox and work like the
dickens, you can kinda/sorta implement columns of text in some browsers,
but it's far more trouble than it's worth. Take my word for it. ;{>} (I was
bored one day.)

OTOH, if what you're talking about is simply using columns as layout
guides, that's done fairly easily with tables. Specify each column's width,
and plant a transparent gif in each one stretched to the specified width to
hold the cells open (some browsers close cells without data in them, and
other browsers will disregard your width specification if you simply try to
hold the cell open with a non-breaking space).

Then you use rowspan= and colspan= to lay out your text. You're best off
doing this sort of thing in a text editor, as no WYSIWIG (What You So
Intensely Wish You'd Get) HTML editor will work in this fashion, and while
you can use most of them to accomplish this, you'll be fighting the tool
too often.

The down side to this technique is that it results in a fixed-width page,
which may leave some visitors annoyed as you only use half the screen real
estate they're giving you (or insist on using twice what they wanted to
give you). It's also possible to work around this, but doing so may cause
other problems in the layout as the text flows to fit different window
sizes, so be very careful if you try.

Have fun,
Chief Managing Director In Charge, Department of Redundancy Department
DNRC 224

Arlen -dot- P -dot- Walker -at- JCI -dot- Com
In God we trust; all others must provide data.
Opinions expressed are mine and mine alone.
If JCI had an opinion on this, they'd hire someone else to deliver it.

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