The Definition List element represents a list of terms and corresponding
definitions. Typical formatting of a definition list is flush left for the
term (DT) with the definition (DD) indented on a separate line (block formatted.)
An alternate method of display is to have the DD indented following the DT
item on the same line to more strongly associate the term/definition relationship.
The contents of this list structure is a sequence of DT and DD terms (this
is the only list structure in which the DT and DD elements are allowed to appear,
and they are usually found in pairs.) Multiple DTs may be grouped with a
single DD, but a DT should not be grouped with multiple consecutive DD elements
following. As with other list elements, the closing </dt> and
</dd> tags are optional in HTML, as they are
implied by the subsequent list items or end </dl> tags.
This attribute helps an author in situations with floating objects (images,
tables, etc.) produced through the Left and
Right ALIGN attributes. It allows content to stop being
flowed around the floated element.
[DEFAULT - No special line breaking
effects are applied relative to the floating element.] Left [breaks line after this element
and moves down vertically until the left margin is clear of floated objects.] Right [breaks line after this element
and moves down vertically until the right margin is clear of floated objects.] All [breaks line after this element
and moves down vertically until both margins are clear of floated objects.]
This attribute specifies whether or not the content of the element will
use normal HTML linebreaking conventions. If False, normal linebreaking
behavior is used. If set to True, the element will not wrap to the
rendering viewport unless explicit linebreaking elements are added.
May also be used as a standalone attribute, in which case the value is
treated as TRUE.
This is an SGML Document Access
(SDA) attribute. SDA attributes are designed to transform HTML (and
other SGML-based documents) to the ICADD
DTD - which is used in creating accessible documents for users with
visual disabilities (rendering in Braille, large print, speech synthesis,
etc.) The attribute value specifies the name of the element to convert this
element to in the SDA element group (in this case the 'Term' element -
"term or keyword" for DT, and 'LItem' - "list of items" for DD.)
Value: Term for DT (Denotes 'term or keyword' in SDA.) LItem for DD (Denotes a 'list of items' in SDA.)
Despite the above caveat to not have multiple consecutive DD elements,
most browsers have no problem with it.
One of the most common usages for this list structure is solely to achieve
indentation capability with the DD element [this document is an example.]
If you specifically create indenting, CSS is the preferred method.
Useless Trivia: There appears to be some
confusion as to what DD stands for mnemonically, even in the official
W3C documentation I have read. I have heard all of these used: "Definition
Definition", "Definition Discussion" and "Definition
Description". It probably doesn't matter which term is used, as
long as both parties can agree to the subject being discussed.