Separate content from description

Once again facing folks who aren’t using styles, I was triggered to think more deeply about the underlying principle. That is, to separate content from description. It’s a step forward in what we can do with systems to bring about a more powerful human-aligned system.

And, as always, here’s the text, in case you (like me) prefer to read ;).

I’ve ranted before about styles, but I want to make a slightly different pitch today. It’s not just about styles, it’s about the thinking behind it. The point is to separate content from description.

So, the point about styles is that they’re a definition of formatting. You have elements of documents like headings at various levels, and body text, and special paragraphs like quotes, and so on. Then you have features, like font size, bolding and italics, color, etc. And what you see, too often, is people hand-formatting documents, choosing to do headers by increasing the font size, bolding, etc. And, importantly, having to go through and change them all manually if there’s a desire for a change in look. 

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