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10.7. Tables

tag.  You can count on all browsers having the basic fonts--Arial,Courier and Times Roman--but browsers that don't have the font you specifywill simply substitute some other font, and the effect you want may bediminished or lost.  The <BASEFONT> or <FONT>tags can list multiple fonts in order of preference.  The list shouldinclude a generic font family as a last resort, e.g.
   <FONT FACE="Creepy, Times New Roman, serif">
Generic font families include serif, sans-serif, monospace,cursiveand fantasy

Perhaps as a result of a generic need to be able to describe table layout -- something CSS1 lacks -- CSS2 includes a handful of features that apply directly to tables and table cells. First, there are 10 new table-related values for display:

table
inline-table
table-column-group
table-column
table-row-group
table-row
table-cell
table-caption
table-header-group
table-footer-group 

While the effects of most of these are obvious from their names, at least two may not be familiar to you. table-header-group and table-footer-group are used to mark the header and footer of a table. These are displayed, respectively, above or below all the rows of the table, but not outside of the table's caption.

Another interesting effect is that you can align text on a character by using the text-align property. For example, if you wanted to line up a column of figures on a decimal point, you might declare:

TD { text-align: "." }

As long as a set of cells are grouped into a column, their content will be aligned so that the periods all line up along a vertical axis.

Far from relying on existing properties, CSS2 provides a whole array of brand-new properties in the table section. Here are a few of them:

There are also properties describing how visibility and vertical-align are applied to tables. There is also a caption-side property, which functions exactly the same as the ALIGN attribute on the <CAPTION> tag, and the property speak-header-cell, which controls how header cells are handled by speech-generating browsers (more on that later).



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8.2.1.2. Collapsing vertical margins

There is one other important aspect of vertical formatting, which is the collapsing of adjacent margins. This comes into play when an element with declared margins immediately follows another such element in the document's layout. This was discussed in the previous chapter, using this example: