chocolate coated ice creams

No Ice Cream until you’ve Eaten all of your Pseudo-Elements

To me, the psuedo-elements — :first-line, and :first-letter have never seemed to be very useful. Their very conception, i thought seemed a bit whacky, and i never really understood it, nor had i found any regular use for them.

I had used the psuedo-elements, :before and :after in the original stylesheet for my first all-CSS original creation– but i think it’s safe to say i was doing so for little more than the purpose of practicing. Whether my use of :before and /or :after in that stylesheet contributed to the overall quality of the aesthetics of the web site is far within the realm of mixed opinion.

Applied Use of :first-letter

It has come to my attention lately, however, that there is perhaps a very fine use for the :first-letter psuedo-element. the technique i picked up came, not from any of the popularly designers’ venues, such as A List ApartBerea St., or CSS guru, Eric Meyer (principal consultant of Complex Spiral, Enterprise consulting for web standards), but to my surprise, i picked up this technique straight from the horses mouth! The following reference demonstrates the intuitive design which lends insight into the manner of thinking exercised in harvesting the power of CSS. Follow the link below to learn how this practical use of the :first-letter pseudo-element may be easily appended to an existing stylesheet.

A Practical, Easy to Add Style

If you are interested in trying some new things with CSS– especially if you’ve got a few years of CSS under your belt, i recommend you take a fresh look at the official w3c.org CSS 2 Recommendation, or the revision of that standard, the CSS 2.1 Candidate— not yet to recognized as a normative reference (and as of this date, not to be cited as such).
Try out the W3C’s own suggestion for using CSS to emulate the classic typographical style technique, the ‘Drop Cap’. Don’t be afraid to continue beyond the section on :first-line and :first-letter– this is only the beginning of the great ideas presented by the w3c.

(a drop cap [or dropcap, drop-cap]) is easily recognizable– as the first letter of a paragraph, signified as typically twice the size of the text which follows it. Enjoy this very easy way of spicing up your paragraph styles. Kudos to the W3C for publishing something practical!

Authored, 2006-12-23 – Published 2009-02

On 2009-02-20, this text was edited slightly from the original (recently discovered, previously unpublished), written on 2006-12-23


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