Media queries is a feature of CSS 3 allowing content rendering to adapt to different conditions such as screen resolution (e.g. mobile and desktop screen size). It became a W3C recommended standard in June 2012,[1] and is a cornerstone technology of responsive web design (RWD).

History edit

Media queries were first sketched in Håkon Wium Lie's initial CSS proposal in 1994,[2] but they did not become part of CSS 1. The HTML4 Recommendation from 1997 shows an example of how media queries could be added in the future.[3] In 2000, W3C started work on media queries and also on another scheme for supporting various devices: CC/PP. The two address the same problem, but CC/PP is server-centric, while media queries are browser-centric.[4] The first public working draft for media queries was published in 2001.[5] Media Queries Level 3, published as a Candidate Recommendation on 27 July 2010, became a W3C Recommendation on 19 June 2012. Proposed corrections were published on 5 April 2022.[6]

Media Queries Level 4, published as a Working Draft on 9 May 2017, were a W3C Candidate Recommendation Draft as of 25 December 2021.[7]

Usage edit

A media query consists of a media type and one or more expressions, involving media features, which resolve to either true or false. The result of the query is true if the media type specified in the media query matches the type of device the document is being displayed on and all expressions in the media query are true. When a media query is true, the corresponding style sheet or style rules are applied, following the normal cascading rules.[8][9] Media queries use the @media CSS "at-rule".

Examples edit

The following are examples of CSS media queries:

@media screen and (display-mode: fullscreen) {
  /* Code in here only applies to screens in fullscreen */
@media all and (orientation: landscape) {
  /* Code in here only applies in landscape orientation */
@media screen and (min-device-width: 500px) {
  /* Code in here only applies to screens equal or greater than 500 pixels wide */

Media types edit

A media type can be declared in the head of an HTML document using the "media" attribute inside of a <link> element. The value of the "media" attribute specifies on what device the linked document will be displayed.[10] Media types can also be declared within XML processing instructions, the @import at-rule, and the @media at-rule. CSS 2 defines the following as media types:[11]

  • all (suitable for all devices)
  • braille
  • embossed
  • handheld
  • print
  • projection
  • screen
  • speech
  • tty
  • TV

The media type "all" can also be used to indicate that a style sheet applies to all media types.[12]

Media features edit

The following table contains the media features listed in the latest W3C recommendation for media queries, dated 6 June 2007.[13]

Feature Value Min/Max Description
color integer Yes Number of bits per color component
color-index integer Yes Number of entries in the color lookup table
device-aspect-ratio integer/integer Yes Aspect ratio
device-height length Yes Height of the output device
device-width length Yes Width of the output device
grid integer No True for a grid-based device
height length Yes Height of the rendering surface
monochrome integer Yes Number of bits per pixel in a monochrome frame buffer
orientation "portrait" or "landscape" No Orientation of the screen
resolution resolution ("dpi", "dpcm" or "dppx") Yes Resolution
scan "progressive" or "interlaced" No Scanning process of "tv" media types
width length Yes Width of the rendering surface

References edit

  1. ^ Media Queries Publication History 19 June 2012
  2. ^ Håkon Wium Lie. "Cascading HTML Style Sheets". Retrieved 20 January 2013.
  3. ^ "Basic HTML data types".
  4. ^ "Re: Feedback on Media Queries CR from Håkon Wium Lie on 2002-07-17 ( from July 2002)".
  5. ^ "Media queries".
  6. ^ Media Queries Level 3
  7. ^ Media Queries Level 4
  8. ^ "CSS media queries". Mozilla Developer Network and individual contributors. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  9. ^ "How to create media queries in Responsive Web Design". TechRepublic.
  10. ^ "HTML link tag". W3Schools. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  11. ^ "Media Queries". World Wide Web Consortium. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  12. ^ "Media Queries". World Wide Web Consortium. Retrieved 28 April 2017.
  13. ^ "Media Queries". Sitepoint. Retrieved 28 April 2017.

External links edit