IRC log of stateofcss on 2021-10-18

Timestamps are in UTC.

06:42:25 [RRSAgent]
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logging to
06:42:29 [dom]
RRSAgent, stay
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RRSAgent, make log public
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10:51:59 [foolip]
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10:52:13 [foolip]
Hi dom, will you be the staff contact for my session?
10:52:21 [dom]
I will
10:52:25 [foolip]
10:53:01 [foolip]
Should I present my own slides? I'm in the meeting now and tried screen sharing, but it says it's disabled by the host.
10:53:19 [dom]
yes, I'll make sure you can present your own slides
10:55:22 [foolip]
OK, I'll share the link here too before we start
10:56:53 [dom]
if they're ready to share, maybe give me the link now and I'll add it to the session description?
10:57:17 [dom]
I would also generate a PDF version for archival
11:39:31 [foolip]
11:39:41 [foolip]
But they're not done, so please no PDF yet :)
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13:47:50 [dom]
foolip, can I pdf-ize the slides now?
13:49:45 [foolip]
dom: yes, let's call it done now :)
13:49:46 [dom]
Meeting: State of CSS 2021 - TPAC 2021 breakout
13:50:52 [dom]
13:50:56 [dom]
Chair: foolip
13:52:04 [wolfgang]
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13:54:33 [dom]
13:54:38 [foolip]
13:54:42 [dom]
Present+ Wolfgang_Schindler
13:54:59 [dom]
dom has changed the topic to: State of CSS breakouts -
13:55:21 [dom]
Present+ Jean-Yves_Perrier
13:55:38 [dom]
Present+ Eric_Meyer
13:56:59 [foolip]
What's the passcode?
13:57:10 [foolip]
When I paste into my app, it wants one
13:58:00 [foolip]
I tried a0ZTMDZzTjVSYm1GRHhtWUR1cUtLZz09 and that worked, it looks kinda base64-encoded so I wasn't sure
13:58:03 [dom]
Present+ Emmett_Miller
13:58:21 [dom]
Present+ Alan_Davalos
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13:59:49 [dom]
Present+ Brian_Kardell
13:59:58 [dom]
Present+ Jonathan_Kew
14:00:03 [dom]
Present+ Rachel_Andrew
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Present+ Phuc_Le
14:00:23 [dom]
Present+ Brady_Duga
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Present+ PLH
14:01:01 [dom]
Present+ Sophie_Yaniw
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14:01:31 [dom]
Present+ Ben_Tillyer
14:01:59 [duga]
14:02:31 [dom]
Present+ Lea_Verou
14:02:34 [dom]
Present+ Atsushi
14:02:59 [dom]
foolip: we're going to look at state of css survey 2021 results
14:03:01 [atsushi]
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14:03:09 [dom]
... I'm Philip, I work with the Chrome team and am involved in the survey this year
14:03:10 [dom]
[slide 2]
14:03:19 [dom]
... Reminder we're operating under W3C CoC
14:03:22 [dom]
[slide 3]
14:03:28 [fantasai]
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14:03:30 [dom]
... if you want to ask questions, please raise your hand in Zoom
14:03:50 [dom]
Present+ Elika
14:03:54 [dom]
Present+ John_Riviello
14:03:59 [dom]
Present+ Ralph_Swick
14:04:02 [dom]
Present+ Faraaz_M
14:04:06 [dom]
Present+ Rob_Smith
14:04:10 [dom]
Present+ Semesse
14:04:18 [dom]
Present+ Mason_Freed
14:04:20 [dom]
[slide 4]
14:04:28 [fantasai]
14:04:33 [dom]
Foolip: the survey is open until the end of october at
14:04:47 [dom]
... Sacha Greif is the maintainer of that survey, 3rd year running
14:04:51 [dom]
... ~4,400 responses so far
14:05:01 [dom]
... the results are based on a snapshot of results
14:05:22 [dom]
... Sarah Fossheim has also been helping out, with a focus on accessibility both on the survey tool & content
14:05:24 [dom]
[slide 5]
14:05:41 [dom]
... I don't want to influence the results in any way - we're using the results to set priorities for Chrome
14:05:57 [dom]
... great if you're asking people to fill the survey
14:06:05 [dom]
... but don't influence them based on what you'll hear today
14:06:17 [dom]
... I won't share anything about rankings & percentages
14:06:21 [dom]
... still hope this will be a worthwhile preview
14:06:23 [dom]
[slide 6]
14:06:28 [dom]
... Accessibility changes made this year
14:06:30 [dom]
[slide 7]
14:06:39 [dom]
... we added a new section on a11y in the survey
14:06:51 [dom]
... and improved the accessibility of the survey tool itself - thanks to Sarah!
14:07:08 [dom]
... In that section, we've asked e.g. "which accessibility features do you usually implement"
14:07:17 [dom]
... incl alt text, aria attributes
14:07:45 [dom]
... this included a more open ended question about "other accessibility features" in addition to the ones listed in the question
14:08:24 [dom]
[slide 10]
14:08:34 [dom]
... focus handling was mentioned several times
14:08:49 [dom]
[slide 11]
14:09:10 [dom]
... respecting font scaling - useful e.g. for low vision users; that takes special efforts
14:09:15 [dom]
... not sure how this can get tested
14:09:21 [dom]
[slide 12]
14:09:54 [dom]
... one respondent suggested getting input from UX designers to order the DOM for screen reader flow
14:09:59 [dom]
[slide 13]
14:10:04 [dom]
... Missing features
14:10:08 [dom]
... [slide 14]
14:10:24 [dom]
... a multi-select question asking what is currently missing from CSS, seeded by responses from last year
14:10:34 [dom]
[slide 15]
14:10:41 [dom]
... also had an open ended question for that one
14:10:43 [dom]
[slide 16]
14:11:02 [dom]
... parent selector made it there - the developer demand is strong on that one
14:11:05 [dom]
[slide 17]
14:11:17 [dom]
... as well as other selectors, e.g. backward looking sibling selectors
14:11:19 [dom]
[slide 18]
14:11:38 [dom]
... some requests related to grid - e.g. styling the lines of a grid
14:11:51 [dom]
Present+ Bret_Little
14:12:10 [dom]
... All these quotes are from public data linked from the end of this presentation
14:12:18 [dom]
Present+ Bruce_Miller
14:12:27 [dom]
[slide 19]
14:12:37 [dom]
... Browser incompatibilities, the part of the survey I've been spending the most time on
14:12:40 [dom]
[slide 20]
14:12:52 [dom]
... which features create the most difficulties due to interop issues?
14:12:58 [dom]
Present+ Kazuhiro_Joya
14:13:00 [dom]
Present+ MCF
14:13:08 [dom]
Present+ Michael_Smith
14:13:28 [dom]
Foolip: this question received the most responses
14:13:33 [dom]
... a sample of them follows
14:13:38 [dom]
[slide 21]
14:13:49 [dom]
foolip: subgrid was definitely on people's minds, like last year
14:13:58 [dom]
Present+ siri
14:14:07 [dom]
foolip: subgrid is only supported in Firefox
14:14:09 [dom]
[slide 22]
14:14:27 [dom]
... this should encourage us to prioritize sub-grid in terms of implementations
14:14:44 [dom]
... Web developers demand for this is pretty big - was already last year, still this year
14:14:58 [dom]
[slide 23]
14:15:29 [dom]
Foolip: a new one emerged: backdrop-filter()
14:15:42 [dom]
... that one is missing only in Firefox (ignoring IE)
14:15:50 [dom]
[slide 24]
14:16:09 [dom]
... illustration of what the feature does, a frosted glass effect above images
14:16:33 [dom]
... it has been identified as a site-compat issue in firefox, but no clear plans for implementation
14:16:35 [dom]
[slide 25]
14:16:52 [dom]
... the :focus-visible pseudo-class
14:17:18 [dom]
... applied only when the browser would apply it by default - there are differences across platforms about when items get a focus ring, e.g. buttons
14:17:26 [dom]
... :focus-visible allows to match the defaults of the platform
14:17:31 [dom]
... not yet shipping in Safari yet
14:17:53 [dom]
... Igalia has been working on developing it in Webkit, following the open prioritization effort
14:18:18 [dom]
... not enabled by default, so not shipped in Safari (but available in Safari TP)
14:18:22 [dom]
[slide 26]
14:18:27 [dom]
s/... [/[/
14:18:40 [dom]
Foolip: another popular time - flex gap
14:18:53 [dom]
... it has shipped, but can't be depended on yet
14:19:08 [dom]
... it was in the MDN DNA report in 2019
14:19:15 [dom]
... and gained prioritization based on that
14:19:37 [dom]
[slide 27]
14:19:50 [dom]
... a particular aspect to this is the challenge in feature detecting it
14:19:52 [dom]
[slide 28]
14:19:57 [dom]
... another refinement
14:19:59 [dom]
[slide 29]
14:20:17 [dom]
... initially, this came as grid-gap, then renamed as gap to work also with flex
14:20:43 [dom]
... the @supports(gap) feature detection has returned true before it became available for flex
14:20:48 [dom]
... which breaks feature detection
14:20:58 [dom]
... this has been discussed in the CSS WG, without too much of a conclusion
14:21:15 [dom]
... if a flex-gap alias had been added, this problem would have been different
14:21:21 [dom]
... it's probably too late to do that at this point
14:21:40 [dom]
... but that's an interesting insight, maybe for the CSS WG consideration
14:21:53 [fantasai]
This kind of thing is quite likely to happen again, where a property is expanded to a new display type
14:21:57 [dom]
... considering an alias for feature detection, or avoiding to merge two features in one
14:22:17 [dom]
[slide 31]
14:22:21 [dom]
... Questions about Pain points in CSS
14:22:23 [dom]
[slide 32]
14:22:29 [dom]
... seeded with a set of options
14:22:37 [dom]
[slide 33]
14:22:48 [dom]
... and an open ended question about "other CSS pain points"
14:22:55 [dom]
[slide 34]
14:23:11 [dom]
... a couple of mention that CSS is hard to learn / remember
14:23:20 [dom]
... not surprisingly given the history & evolution
14:23:31 [dom]
... this echoes something I heard from developers e.g. on flexbox
14:23:52 [dom]
[slide 35]
14:24:18 [dom]
... multiple comments related to the community mocking having challenges with CSS
14:24:36 [dom]
... related to the devaluation of the front-end skills, or the general discussion about whether CSS is a programming language
14:24:48 [dom]
... probably not a W3C problem per se, but it's interesting to seeing it emerge here
14:24:59 [dom]
[slide 36]
14:25:19 [dom]
... one comment saying properties emerge from vendor needs rather than developer needs
14:25:42 [dom]
... lots of efforts in trying to collect developer input to drive prioritization
14:26:08 [dom]
... what should we do to change this and have a tighter feedback loop?
14:26:16 [dom]
[slide 37]
14:26:24 [dom]
.... WHat next? What are we going to do with these results?
14:26:41 [dom]
... the full results will come in a few weeks
14:27:01 [dom]
Brian: I gather these are summaries of results
14:27:17 [dom]
Foolip: these are the exact words from the responses, but sometimes just an extract
14:27:33 [dom]
Brian: is there any way to follow up with people who've given these answers?
14:27:45 [dom]
... this would help to get to more specific needs
14:28:03 [dom]
Foolip: re can we follow-up, I'll have to ask Sacha; I'm pretty sure this hasn't been done in past years
14:28:17 [dom]
... the survey can be filled anonymously, but you can optionally share you github or twitter account
14:28:38 [dom]
... but that will depend on what the survey promised in terms of data handling
14:28:56 [dom]
Brian: we could also follow up through a twitter poll - e.g. do you agree with that perspective?
14:29:52 [dom]
foolip: following up is a lot of work from past experience
14:30:08 [dom]
... also people may not have that strong an opinion once you start following up
14:30:26 [dom]
... in any case, I'll ask Sacha about possible follow up
14:30:29 [dom]
[slide 38]
14:30:44 [dom]
Foolip: I think the browser vendors should use the results of survey like that one as a prioritization signal
14:30:52 [dom]
... e.g. subgrid should gain higher priority
14:31:07 [dom]
... a feature I haven't mentioned is "container query" - my guess is that it will be even stronger
14:31:24 [dom]
... this also applies for standard makers prioritization
14:31:40 [dom]
... one way of doing that is in Compat 2022 effort
14:31:44 [dom]
-> Compat 2022 effort
14:32:01 [dom]
... in the WPT community, trying to take a few areas and their test suites and prioritize their improvement over the course of next year
14:32:12 [dom]
... the same way we did that in 2021 - sticky, grid, flexbox
14:32:13 [fantasai]
Container Queries is being prioritized, it's just a hard problem, so browsers have been laying down the groundwork for that for awhile. Chrome especially has put in a lot of work on the implementation side, exploring how to make it actually work.
14:32:45 [dom]
... maybe useful to present something to the CSS WG too - maybe some of the members of the group here can help me toward that
14:32:54 [dom]
[slide 39]
14:32:55 [fantasai]
Subgrid I think is one area where browser vendors did not prioritize for a long time, perhaps seeing it as not important enough.
14:33:02 [fantasai]
(Aside from Firefox)
14:33:06 [dom]
... The data used for the presentation is available in the spreadsheet
14:33:21 [dom]
-> State of CSS 2021 TPAC analysis
14:33:31 [dom]
... it's not complete, but quite a bit of work to put responses in relevant buckets
14:34:25 [dom]
Topic: Discussion
14:35:09 [dom]
Brian: once the results are complete and compiled, it would be great to come present that to the CSS WG
14:35:16 [dom]
... the chairs probably could figure that out
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14:35:38 [dom]
Foolip: I've been to CSS WG meetings at TPAC; I can ask indeed, either Tab or one of the chairs
14:35:48 [dom]
Elika: just sending an email to Alan and @@@
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14:35:54 [fantasai]
14:35:58 [dom]
Foolip: anything in particular that would be interesting to the CSS WG?
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14:36:03 [dom]
... there will be a lot of results
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14:36:19 [dom]
... maybe I can throw a draft to someone to help filter it out
14:36:27 [dom]
Brian: several of us here would be happen to have a look at it
14:36:45 [dom]
Foolip: there have been lots of surveys, other research can be done
14:36:55 [dom]
... to what extent is that part of the CSS WG working mode?
14:37:06 [dom]
... e.g. test different CSS syntax with web developers
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14:37:54 [dom]
fantasai: historically, mostly informal feedback through twitter, conferences, devrel conversations
14:38:07 [dom]
... like Jen or Rachel
14:38:30 [dom]
... we haven't done any kind of very broad outreach survey
14:38:43 [dom]
... the closest thing was in 2008 through the Web Standards Project
14:38:48 [dom]
... which came back with a very long list
14:39:00 [dom]
brian: I remember some discussions where people saw things very differently
14:39:17 [dom]
... and we crafted a very specific kind of poll and asked everybody in the WG to promote it and get some feedback
14:39:26 [dom]
fantasai: we've done that in a handful of times, but not very oftne
14:39:41 [dom]
... in terms of what to work on, that's everybody that comes ot the CSS WG that has ideas about that
14:39:58 [dom]
... what ends up being worked on depends on what people are ready to work on
14:40:15 [dom]
lea: implementors have more influence than developers, that's the unfortunate reality
14:40:24 [dom]
foolip: that matches one of the comments I mentioned earlier
14:40:46 [dom]
... this is where i suggest vendors should take into account more the signal from developers
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14:41:40 [dom]
Brian: part of the challenge is that some things, everybody ask for but they're very complex to do
14:41:58 [dom]
... and conversely, some things don't get asked for so much, but can really change what CSS can accomplish
14:42:17 [dom]
Lea: people know the problem they have, but don't always know some of the features that can help solve them
14:42:40 [dom]
Foolip: respondents did note they stay away from features that aren't x-browser implemented
14:42:43 [dom]
... e.g. flex gap
14:42:52 [dom]
... my question about the CSS WG was how to arrange this
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14:43:02 [dom]
... I'm not aware that any other WG has a more formal approach
14:43:10 [dom]
... I'm not sure there is a need for a big fancy research thing
14:43:19 [dom]
... but I hope State of CSS can be useful to the WG and to the vendors
14:43:36 [dom]
AlanD: re vendor prioritization
14:43:44 [dom]
... I've only gotten involved very recently
14:44:04 [dom]
... most users don't know what's coming, or when it's coming
14:44:16 [dom]
... if we could do better with signals about what features are being implemented, and when
14:44:22 [dom]
... it would help a lot mitigate that sentiment
14:44:31 [dom]
... esp since CSS is hard to polyfill
14:44:54 [dom]
foolip: where would you be looking for this?
14:45:15 [dom]
AlanD: all browsers have their own status pages; but it's not very clear how uptodate and accurate it is
14:45:20 [dom]
... having a centralized store might help too
14:45:49 [dom]
Foolip: would you trust canIUse (or BCD) with information about the future?
14:46:05 [dom]
... getting promises from vendors before they ship is something no vendors want to do
14:46:17 [dom]
... but that problem aside, would caniuse be a place?
14:46:28 [dom]
AlanD: yes, both caniuse and MDN would be relevant
14:46:43 [dom]
... I know exact dates would be difficult, but at least some signal of interest of implementation would be useful
14:47:02 [dom]
Brian: I know this has been discussed in MDN and other places
14:47:17 [dom]
... when do we achieve a new level of compat across 3 engines
14:47:33 [dom]
... it's rare enough that it would be interesting to the broadest set of people
14:47:39 [dom]
... having some way to track that would be really helpful
14:47:54 [dom]
... we have several comments that there are so many things happening that it's hard to keep up
14:48:16 [dom]
... and you don't always need the said feature right at the moment, or you need some delay before you can apply it
14:48:27 [dom]
... the challenge is to find something with a high signal/noise ratio
14:48:46 [dom]
foolip: a Web platform newsletter with what's new and usable on the Web - that seems very doable
14:48:55 [dom]
... but you still have the problem of the relevance of that
14:50:24 [dom]
AlanD: worth trying; not sure what the right solution would be
14:50:31 [dom]
... but centralizing the information owuld help in the long term
14:50:43 [dom]
lea: it looks like something that could be done automatically based on the canIUse data?
14:50:54 [dom]
foolip: yes, that's what I've been looking to
14:51:07 [dom]
... but it needs some writing to decorate it
14:51:12 [dom]
lea: we should decouple the two
14:51:26 [dom]
... just a notification of features that become x-browser usable would be useful
14:51:47 [dom]
... sometimes I discover a feature I had put aside has become x-browser compat a year after it happened
14:52:16 [dom]
brian: we have "web standards in 2 minutes" that curate specific useful features into short term format
14:52:55 [dom]
foolip: this could be just for CSS, or JS, or the whole Web
14:53:07 [dom]
... seems like a good idea, and not too hard to put together
14:53:40 [dom]
... MDN folks have also suggested allowing to subscribe to Browser Compat Data updates
14:54:16 [dom]
Present+ Weiwei_Zong
14:54:46 [dom]
fantasai: re the question about most wanted feature - what's the thinking about giving a list of choices vs just an open text field?
14:54:54 [dom]
foolip: last year it was just an open text field
14:55:17 [dom]
... the results of last years were used to populate the 8 initial values
14:55:38 [dom]
... if we had just had the open box, we would have received similar signals - this allows to get more of the below-the-fold data
14:56:02 [dom]
... the downside is that you're almost guaranteed the pre-selected ones will be seen as important
14:56:15 [dom]
... also you can't rank the pre-selected against the open-ended values
14:56:17 [alangdm]
I had to move to a different session, great talk @foolip, it was really insightful :D
14:56:38 [dom]
Present+ Michal_Mocny
14:56:44 [dom]
fantasai: that makes sense
14:56:55 [dom]
Rachel: the question I would really like to ask is "what can't you do"
14:57:05 [fantasai]
14:57:06 [dom]
... asking about features pre-suppose people know what a feature can do
14:57:20 [dom]
... e.g. a number of container queries use cases can be done with e.g. grid
14:57:43 [dom]
... finding out what people can't do with the existing technology is what's difficult to get
14:57:57 [dom]
foolip: one recent example is the scrolling survey that Adam Argyle put together
14:58:16 [dom]
... e.g. cyclical scrolling or carousel
14:58:22 [dom]
... instead of feature-targets
14:58:44 [dom]
... wouldn't it too broad to ask what you can't do?
14:59:00 [dom]
-> Scroll Survey Report
14:59:01 [fantasai]
14:59:10 [dom]
Rachel: that's the kind of signals that I'm missing from conferences
14:59:25 [dom]
... surveys tend to speak to people that know already quite a bit about these
14:59:35 [dom]
... not sure how much they represent the feeling of developers in general
15:00:01 [dom]
foolip: there is one area where this issue is clear: viewport
15:00:19 [dom]
... people don't have ways to express to say they want to use the whole viewport @@@
15:01:18 [dom]
RobSmith: I'm trying to integrate CSS with a format based on WebVMT
15:01:28 [dom]
... I'm not a CSS guru, and wanted to get expertise
15:01:41 [dom]
... which github should I raise my questions?
15:01:46 [dom]
fantasai: #css on IRC
15:01:49 [dom]
... www-style
15:01:59 [dom]
... and for spec issues,
15:02:22 [dom]
Rob: CSS is integrated in WebVTT to some degree; I'm trying to extend it but I'm not sure how
15:02:33 [foolip]
15:02:37 [dom]
fantasai: this sounds relevant for www-style - doesn't feel like a spec issue
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15:03:17 [dom]
RRSAgent, draft minutes v-slide
15:03:17 [RRSAgent]
I have made the request to generate dom
15:04:04 [fantasai]
15:04:24 [RRSAgent]
I have made the request to generate fantasai
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