> What I'm looking for is suggestions of better columnar layout in which
> rather than the centre column dropping down, columns stay where they
> should and the browser's horizontal scrollbar appears instead.

This problem is due to IE's rendering of content and containers. Other
browsers honour container width and either wrap or poke content out. IE will
force the container to stay as wide as the widest content inside - which
could be an image, a flash component, a url or even a long word. This means
columns drop down till they find space that accommodates them.

Here are a range of off-the-top-of-the-head suggestions - some of which may
be totally impractical:
 
1. make the three columns float (or at least the left and middle) so that
the third column will drop rather than the main one.

2. use min-width so the page never collapses below a certain point (would
need something like Dean Edwards IE7 added so IE will honour the min-width)

3. use javascript to redraw the layout when the page hits a narrower width -
flipping to a new css file:
http://www.themaninblue.com/experiment/ResolutionLayout/

4. place decorative image elements as background images so that containers
can collapse without restrictions.

5. make the entire layout liquid so that the page can collapse much further
without breaking - at present the left and right columns are locked to a set
width which means the middle column does all the collapsing.

I'm sure other more valuable offerings will come from others... :)
Russ

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