[pmwiki-users] RFC: Core candidate offerings

John Rankin john.rankin at affinity.co.nz
Fri Mar 31 20:14:51 CST 2006

On Saturday, 1 April 2006 1:35 PM, Allister Jenks <arj at zkarj.co.nz> wrote:
>Ben has already said it.  The way to separate paragraphs in
>HTML/CSS and in MS Word and probably in many other
>languages/tools is to specify paragraph spacing.  The use of
>additional paragraphs/linefeeds to visually separate paragraphs
>that have run-on from a content point of view is not the
>correct way to do things and usually causes problems further
>down the line.  Witness what is happening here, and what
>happens when a similar approach is taken in Word documents.

Spot on! When we produce typeset printed pages from pmwiki,
we throw away the <p class='vspace'> for this very reason.
>Patrick, I can't agree that 'blank lines do not mean
>"paragraph", they mean "vertical space", which is usually and
>exactly what the author intended them to mean' because there is
>currently no other way to create *any* visual gap between two
>lines of text - no way to create a new paragraph without also
>creating vertical space.

No, Patrick's right -- this is how blank lines are currently
interpreted, but the space is implemented using an empty <p>.
>I'm not overly fussed about the specifics of the markup, but I
>think we need to address the distinction between 'paragraph
>spacing' and 'vertical space'.  I do, however, agree with Ben
>that blank lines *in the source* can be used to indicate
>paragraphs.  If we can devise a markup to use in that context,
>there is no reason to change that.

I wonder if this is not a markup problem at all, but a question 
of how to interpret existing markup. Consider the following.

Text 1.

Text 2.

Text 3.
Text 4.


<p class='spaced'>Text 1.</p>
<p class='spaced'>Text 2.</p>
<p class='unspaced'>Text 3.</p>
<p class='unspaced'>Text 4.</p>

So a new directive tells pmwiki to interpret one return as 
denoting an end of paragraph. And we use css classes to 
control the spacing between paragraphs. And now a paragraph 
is a paragraph is a paragraph. What about lists?

* item 1

* item 2
* item 3

would produce

<ul><li class='spaced'>item 1</li>
<li class='spaced'>item 2</li>
<li class='unspaced'>item 3</li></ul>

Would this be a desirable and feasible approach?
John Rankin

More information about the pmwiki-users mailing list