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Spans are stripped out by Outlook 2010 in HTML mail. This is not edge case, as you may think. Most corporates are still on Outlook 2010 (and IE 6, especially large banks in the UK).



Outlook 2007+ use MS Word as email layout engine, instead of Trident (Internet Explorer). MS Word "web view" is based on Frontpage (which itself forked of trident) and produces broken HTML 4 output.

The HTML email world is stuck with HTML 4.1, inline CSS and many corner cases (worse than the IE6 era!).


> The HTML email world is stuck with HTML 4.1, inline CSS and many corner cases (worse than the IE6 era!).

It might be for the better, actually. HTML5 and CSS3 are Turing-complete[0] so I can imagine that the moment they would be allowed, some clever marketing company would figure out new and impressive ways to use the new features to scam people. Er. I meant, "provide value-added content".

[0] - with user closing the loop, see http://beza1e1.tuxen.de/articles/accidentally_turing_complet... for links to an example.


Even if the user didn't have to click on each box, that's not even close to turing complete in the problematic sense. It requires a new line of html for every cycle. O(n).

You can do worse with less.

It doesn't belong on that page.

(Hint: basic arithmetic is turing complete if you give it the same affordances)


First, thank you for the information. It is still very much an edge-case, though. Most HTML ist published on the web, not in emails and most emails are plain text. A few have very simple formatting in HTML. Very few actually have a complex layout, and how many of those could possibly benefit for vertical alignment? And that tiny fraction, if viewed in Outlook 2010 will display - well - not centered.


Sorry for my late reply. HTML email is separate media and separate (very large) business. Cost per lead acquired by using HTML mail is high. So is its market value. So any tool that makes life of HTML mail designer easier will be very much appreciated. Look at litmus.com business.




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