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[css-multicol] Add switch to avoid generating empty column boxes? #1565

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tabatkins opened this issue Jun 26, 2017 · 5 comments

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@tabatkins
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commented Jun 26, 2017

In #1420, dbaron raises the possibility of not generating columns that end up not being filled:

I also wonder whether column-fill: auto that doesn't fill all of the columns should cause some of the columns not to be generated, and leave only the filled columns (with their widths calculated as though they were all to be generated) to be justified. I have mixed feelings about this one, though.

This can't be done by default; it wouldn't be backwards-compatible. But it seems interesting and possibly useful, so we might want to add a switch somewhere for this.

In the default sizing behavior (enabled by justify-content: normal/stretch;), this will result in the remaining columns stretching to fill the area, requiring a re-layout (and possibly removing more columns as the new wider columns absorb more content). But with any other justify-content value, the columns will stay the same size, just align differently.

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commented Mar 27, 2018

In the default sizing behavior (enabled by justify-content: normal/stretch;), this will result in the remaining columns stretching to fill the area

I would be strongly opposed to that behavior being the default. normal should absolutely not do that. First, it breaks compat, and also it is not good behavior. In paginated content with N columns, you expect N columns on every page, including the last one. If some are empty because no content, that's OK, but having a smaller number of larger columns is not the expectation.

If we carve out an exception to make sure that's normal behaves as it always has, then maybe.

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commented Apr 12, 2018

The Working Group just discussed Add switch to avoid generating empty column boxes?.

The full IRC log of that discussion <dael> Topic: Add switch to avoid generating empty column boxes?
<dael> github: https://github.com//issues/1565
<dael> fantasai: I think your issue is wrong
<dael> TabAtkins: Possibly.
<dael> fantasai: I think you're confused about what dbaron said and your issue doens't make sense.
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commented Apr 12, 2018

The Working Group just discussed Add switch to avoid generating empty column boxes?, and agreed to the following resolutions:

  • RESOLVED: Move this issue to L2
The full IRC log of that discussion <dael> tOPIC: Add switch to avoid generating empty column boxes?
<dael> github: https://github.com//issues/1565
<dael> TabAtkins: dbaron raises not making columns if they would be empty in another issue. I don't think can be automatic, so suggestion was to add a switch to auto-drop empty which can then be handled by justify content. Bottom of the description is how justify-content would handle that.
<dael> fantasai: Defer to multicol L2?
<dael> TabAtkins: Yep. I'll rephrase the issue to make it less confusing.
<dael> Rossen: Objections to move to L2?
<dael> RESOLVED: Move this issue to L2

@fantasai fantasai moved this from Needs discussion to Level 2 in css-multicol-1 Apr 12, 2018

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commented Apr 12, 2018

@frivoal This is a suggestion to add an explicit switch for this behavior. There's no backwards-compat concern. If you want a consistent number of columns, don't turn on the switch. (Or if you're okay with less columns as long as they remain the same size and visually line up, set justify-content appropriately.)

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commented Apr 13, 2018

@tabatkins noted. I somehow had missed it was a switch, sorry.

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