On 2007/09/06 20:42 (GMT+0100) Tony Crockford apparently typed:

> I'm slightly hazy on the whole user set browser defaults thing,  
> there seem to be a number of options including application  
> preferences and user stylesheets. and a combination of minimum fonts,  
> ignore all fonts and larger/smaller text settings in IE

The defaults are responsible for the size and family the browser uses when 
neither user nor site applies CSS to elements affected by those defaults, and 
presentational font markup is not employed on those elements.

IE's font smallest/smaller/medium/larger/largest selector in effect is one 
(crude and defective) mechanism that sets its default (the other one is the 
system DPI selection in desktop settings). It's defective in that its
setting is totally disregarded when px or absolute units are applied to size 
text via CSS. IE's two ignore fonts settings mean that the basic defaults are 
applied even when site and/or user CSS exists, plus when sites set
sizes using px or absolute units.

A minimum font size setting in simplistic terms means simply a size below which 
no text will be allowed to be rendered by the browser. Due to the manner of 
implementation by its programmers, Gecko browsers with a minimum
font size applied will often render large portitions of a page not only larger 
than the minimum setting, but also larger than *its own* default size setting. 
The latter mostly happens when authors implement the Clagnut CSS
font sizing method. http://mrmazda.no-ip.com/SS/Clagnut/eonsSS.html

User stylesheets in those rare cases they exist are generally employed to 
override particular site CSS, rather than to affect browser defaults.

> so, what happens if a user has their default font set larger than the  
> browser default in this case?

Can't happen. Browser default == user default. :-p

> conversely what happens if they have set their default smaller than  
> the manufacturer shipped settings?

Given the same size display and the same display resolution, all web page text 
that is sized based on the the browser default setting will be smaller than if 
the shipped settings had been retained.

> Maybe Felix explained it, but I didn't understand it, can someone  
> just make it simple, so I can judge the merit of this pragmatism?

Oh that it should be simple, but with power, comes complexity.
"It yet remains a problem to be solved in human affairs,
whether any free government can be permanent, where the
public worship of God, and the support of religion,
constitute no part of the policy or duty of the state in
any assignable shape."
                             Chief Justice Joseph Story

 Team OS/2 ** Reg. Linux User #211409

Felix Miata  ***  http://mrmazda.no-ip.com/

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