First pass at triaging our proprietary CSS properties

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Julien Chaffraix

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Jul 24, 2013, 1:03:24 PM7/24/13
to blin...@chromium.org, Tab Atkins
Hi everyone,

If you don't care about some data about proprietary features in the
wild and what to do with them, feel free to go on with your life.

We took some time with Tab to triage some of Blink's proprietary
properties based on standardization efforts. It's by no way a definite
list of all our proprietary / prefixed properties but it should be a
good start. The usage numbers are based off Beta over the past week
(29.0.1547.22 on Windows) and some numbers would need to be redone
once it reaches Stable to get more relevant numbers about our users.

Note that all properties should be evaluated independently for removal
or unprefixing and those are just early results to discuss what we
would want to do.


* background-position-x / background-position-y

It's unprefixed and used a bit (about 1% of the pages). If we consider
the usage, there is a definite interest in keeping them around so we
may as well just let them live and reach out to www-style about it.


* background-repeat-x / background-repeat-y

Unprefixed again and not very used (about 0.08% of the pages). If we
decide to keep the background-position-* properties, it makes sense to
keep these too even considering the low usage.


* logical properties (-webkit-border-start, -webkit-border-end,
-webkit-border-before, -webkit-border-after, -webkit-padding-start,
..., -webkit-margin-start, ..., -webkit-min-logical-height,
-webkit-min-logical-width)

There has been several proposals on how to deal with logical
properites [1] but none went to standardization and none matches our
implementation anyway.

It seems like we would want to remove the properties not used (most of
them) and investigate why the rest is used that much: e.g. in the 1 -
1.25% range for -webkit-margin-*.


* Reflection (-webkit-box-reflect)

Mozilla has implemented a different proposal based on element() [2]
that is standardized and there has been no standardization effort
around our property. Furthermore our current implementation has a
definite impact on maintainability (see RenderReplica and how it
interacts with RenderLayer).

The feature is used in 0.35% of the pages which is probably difficult
to deprecate without a good replacement.


* Marquee properties (-webkit-marquee-direction,
-webkit-marquee-increment, -webkit-marquee-speed,
-webkit-marquee-repetition, -webkit-marquee-style)

We set these properties from some presentation attributes on <marquee>.

Based on the usage (0.02% of the pages) and the fact that the CSS
marquee specification is deprecated, it should be fine to restrict
them to the presentation attributes.


* CSS Line Grid [3] properties (-webkit-line-grid, -webkit-line-snap)

While there is a specification associated with the properties, it
hasn't been updated for a while and as far as we could tell, no other
browsers have expressed interest in these properties.

The usage is very low (0.0078%) so we could drop them and re-add them
if the specification stabilizes.


* CSS Text 4 [4] properties (-webkit-hyphenate-character,
-webkit-hyphenate-limit-after, -webkit-hyphenate-limit-before,
-webkit-hyphenate-limit-lines, -webkit-hyphens)

Most of the properties have very low usage and considering the
instability of the specification, should be put behind a runtime flag
or just plainly removed. The only caveat of unexposing them is
-webkit-hyphens which is used in about 0.58% of the pages.


* CSS Mask [5] properties (-webkit-mask-*)

Some of the properties have a fairly high usage (>5%) and thus we
should unprefix them making sure we match the latest specification.


* Border spacing longhands (-webkit-border-horizontal-spacing and
-webkit-border-vertical-spacing)

The longhands naming is just plain wrong as border-spacing is logical
not physical [6].

Unfortunately, -webkit-border-horizontal-spacing seems to be used in
54.55% of the pages while -webkit-border-vertical-spacing is used in
6% of them. This makes it hard to remove them but we would definitely
like to deprecate the names in favor of better replacements.

I haven't been able to explain why the usage of
-webkit-border-horizontal-spacing property is this high (it's
definitely not due to shorthand expansion).


* Final thoughts

Some of the properties have numbers that are unusually high
(-webkit-border-horizontal-spacing and the CSS mask properties). It
would be nice to understand where these numbers come from and if there
is not something skewing our data in some ways.

That's all for now, thanks for reading!
Julien

[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-style/2010Jun/0003.html
[2] https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/CSS/-webkit-box-reflect
[3] http://dev.w3.org/csswg/css-line-grid/
[4] http://dev.w3.org/csswg/css-text-4/
[5] http://www.w3.org/TR/2013/WD-css-masking-20130620/
[6] http://dev.w3.org/csswg/css-writing-modes/#dimension-mapping

Adam Barth

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Jul 24, 2013, 1:24:34 PM7/24/13
to Julien Chaffraix, blink-dev, Tab Atkins
On Wed, Jul 24, 2013 at 10:03 AM, Julien Chaffraix <jchaf...@chromium.org> wrote:
Hi everyone,

If you don't care about some data about proprietary features in the
wild and what to do with them, feel free to go on with your life.

We took some time with Tab to triage some of Blink's proprietary
properties based on standardization efforts. It's by no way a definite
list of all our proprietary / prefixed properties but it should be a
good start. The usage numbers are based off Beta over the past week
(29.0.1547.22 on Windows) and some numbers would need to be redone
once it reaches Stable to get more relevant numbers about our users.

In addition to data from Windows, we might want to consider data from Android.  The usage of WebKit-prefixed features might be significantly different on mobile than on desktop sites.

Adam

Erik Arvidsson

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Jul 24, 2013, 2:57:54 PM7/24/13
to Julien Chaffraix, blink-dev, Tab Atkins
On Wed, Jul 24, 2013 at 10:03 AM, Julien Chaffraix
<jchaf...@chromium.org> wrote:
> * logical properties (-webkit-border-start, -webkit-border-end,
> -webkit-border-before, -webkit-border-after, -webkit-padding-start,
> ..., -webkit-margin-start, ..., -webkit-min-logical-height,
> -webkit-min-logical-width)
>
> There has been several proposals on how to deal with logical
> properites [1] but none went to standardization and none matches our
> implementation anyway.
>
> It seems like we would want to remove the properties not used (most of
> them) and investigate why the rest is used that much: e.g. in the 1 -
> 1.25% range for -webkit-margin-*.

We heavily rely on these in Chrome WebUI pages to do RTL agnostic layout.

See RTL section at
http://www.chromium.org/developers/web-development-style-guide

--
erik

Kenji Baheux

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Jul 25, 2013, 2:16:24 AM7/25/13
to Julien Chaffraix, blink-dev, Tab Atkins
Regarding the following:
 
CSS Text 4 [4] properties (-webkit-hyphenate-character,
-webkit-hyphenate-limit-after, -webkit-hyphenate-limit-before,
-webkit-hyphenate-limit-lines, -webkit-hyphens)
Most of the properties have very low usage and considering the
instability of the specification, should be put behind a runtime flag
or just plainly removed. The only caveat of unexposing them is
-webkit-hyphens which is used in about 0.58% of the pages.

It seems that -webkit-hyphens isn't really supported by Chromium.

Based on comments left by the engineer who worked on it, the remaining work is: "Chromium can hyphenate words only when we install a hyphenation dictionary manually by ourselves. (We need some changes that uploads the dictionary to a server and downloads it.)".

Both items (disabling and tackling the remaining work) are looking for a new owner.



2013/7/24 Julien Chaffraix <jchaf...@chromium.org>

PhistucK

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Jul 25, 2013, 4:12:53 AM7/25/13
to Kenji Baheux, Julien Chaffraix, blink-dev, Tab Atkins
A broken feature detection? ouch...


PhistucK

Tab Atkins

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Jul 25, 2013, 4:37:13 PM7/25/13
to Julien Chaffraix, blin...@chromium.org
On Wed, Jul 24, 2013 at 10:03 AM, Julien Chaffraix
<jchaf...@chromium.org> wrote:
> Unfortunately, -webkit-border-horizontal-spacing seems to be used in
> 54.55% of the pages while -webkit-border-vertical-spacing is used in
> 6% of them. This makes it hard to remove them but we would definitely
> like to deprecate the names in favor of better replacements.

Julien buried this one at the bottom, but it's frankly bizarre. These
properties are *not* used this often, which means something is wrong
in the way we're tracking this stuff somehow.

~TJ

PhistucK

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Jul 25, 2013, 4:41:01 PM7/25/13
to Tab Atkins, Julien Chaffraix, blink-dev
Just a uninformed guess - perhaps every time cellspacing="2" (or similar) is used, it automatically sets this property and the count is triggered.


PhistucK

Mike Lawther

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Jul 25, 2013, 7:05:53 PM7/25/13
to Tab Atkins, Julien Chaffraix, blink-dev
One thing to note (and that I want to fix) with the measurements is that it is still counting the UA stylesheet. If our UA stylesheet uses those, then you'll see it appear more often than you might otherwise expect.

When we record a property is described in more detail in http://src.chromium.org/viewvc/chrome/trunk/src/tools/metrics/histograms/histograms.xml - see the 'detail' part of the MappedCSSProperties enum.

    mike
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