March 28, 2012

When is it semantically correct to use the hr element?

Question by John Doe

The HTML5 reference says that

The hr element represents a paragraph-level thematic break, e.g. a scene change in a story, or a transition to another topic within a section of a reference book.

That description is not enough descriptive to me. I use the hr element in my HTML documents as a way to separate content. Is this correct?

Could anyone give a few examples on when to use it (apart from the examples shown) and when to use CSS styling instead?

Answer by ceoux

It’s proper to use it when you have, say, several paragraphs with two distinct themes.

<p>Paragraph about domestic kittens</p>
<p>Paragraph about kittens' favourite foods</p>
<p>Paragraph about kittens' playfulness</p>
<p>Paragraph about my day at work</p>

If you’d like to otherwise separate themes among images and content, I believe this is also appropriate.

<img src="/img/kitten.jpg" alt="kitten playing with ball">
<img src="/img/kitten1.jpg" alt="kitten drinking milk">
<img src="/img/zebra.jpg" alt="zebras in the wild">

The new use of hr seems to just be for distinguishing topics within HTML. If you find that your content is well-connected, don’t feel that you need to use the tag.

Answer by Starx

According to this article

In HTML 4.01, the <hr> tag represented a horizontal rule.

In HTML5, the <hr> tag defines a thematic break.

However, the <hr> tag may still be displayed as a horizontal rule in
visual browsers, but is now defined in semantic terms, rather than
presentational terms.

All layout attributes (align, noshade, size, and width) in HTML 4.01
was deprecated in HTML 4.01, and is not supported in HTML5. Use CSS to
style the <hr> element instead.

In HTML5, use <hr> when you are diverting your topic from the previously written paragraph.

Author: Nabin Nepal (Starx)

Hello, I am Nabin Nepal and you can call me Starx. This is my blog where write about my life and my involvements. I am a Software Developer, A Cyclist and a Realist. I hope you will find my blog interesting. Follow me on Google+


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