[uf-discuss] Hidden elements considered harmful (Was: Inline style conflict?)

Angus McIntyre angus at pobox.com
Sun Jan 14 18:56:09 PST 2007

At 15:33 -0800 14.01.2007, Chris Messina wrote:
>I too find ths area of microformats one of the weaker areas of
>consensus and of having strong examples of best practices.
>On the one hand, there's the matter of style, where certain data are
>hidden in the interest of visual appeal (CSS Zen Garden, etc).
>Other times, data that is necessary for computer interpretation is
>hidden to save cluttering the human-friendly view -- lately a
>discussion on the inclusion of countries at Upcoming.

As they say over at AOL, "Me too".

I have a still-in-development PHP library that I use to publish pages 
of links to news articles. It uses hAtom to represent each article 
(title, capsule summary, etc). The library is capable of outputting a 
list of tags (using rel-tag) to accompany each item. In some cases, 
however, the taglist clutters up the display too much, and I want to 
hide the tags initially and display them on demand using Javascript.

To me, violating the no-hidden-data principle seems like the lesser 
of two evils here, when the alternative is to distract the user and 
detract from the appearance of the page.

Just my 2c,


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