Flexbox Spec Workshop

“If we did a Flexbox spec workshop, where we went over the whole spec in excruciating detail and sketched illustrations, who would come?” fantasai

This is not a lecture. This is not a classroom. And you will learn things.

Who's running this?

fantasai (aka Elika J. Etemad), co-editor of the spec

What are we doing?

Reading through the entire spec from top to bottom, taking notes, sketching illustrations, creating examples, and making sure every sentence of the spec is understood and understandable.

Note: This is a super-advanced CSS workshop. We'll do a quick crash course in spec terminology at the beginning, but if you don't know what a “containing block” or a “block formatting context” is, you might want to do some reading ahead of time. (You do not need prior familiarity with Flexbox itself; but it will be a very intense learning experience to start with the spec. :)

What to bring

When and where?

Europe = London
3 July 2015, Mozilla London, 9:30am (10am start) until we finish
Hosted by James Graham (Mozilla). Attendees RSVP'd So Far: Michiel Bijl, Chris Bowes, Razvan Caliman, James Churchman, Sean Hester, Shane Hudson, Jonathan Kingston, Sarah Jessica Leivers, Soledad Penadés, Geoffrey Sneddon
West Coast = Seattle
13 July 2015, CDK Digital Marketing, 9:30am (10am start) until we finish
Hosted by Eric Hess. Attendees RSVP'd So Far: Jordan Austin, Ryan Ludwig, Jen Simmons, Alan Stearns, Greg Whitworth, and Meetup.com Registrants
East Coast = Philadelphia
30 August 2015, Think Brownstone, 9:30am (10am start) until we finish. RSVP.
Your Place
Anytime you want, providing you can find some other interested people and are willing to run it yourself. See instructions.

This is an ad-hoc meetup. Your opinions and suggestions on unsettled timing and locations is welcome. Send them to fantasai via email or Twitter.


Your time and your illustrations (including cleaned-up and SVG-ified version, if we decide to adopt it into the spec). Possibly a share of the venue rental, if we end up needing to rent out space.


If you can't make it in person and you want to participate, you can follow along online. Meet up with some flexbox friends somewhere with internet at the same time as the event; we'll be on Skype and/or IRC. Note, I wouldn't recommend doing it alone. As I said, this isn't a lecture that you can just sit and watch, so it'll be boring if you try to follow along alone.

How to Run Your Own Flexbox Workshop

Missed out on the Flexbox workshops? You can run your own, it's easy. Here's how:

  1. Get a bunch of interested people together, along with materials.
  2. Make sure everyone has some familiarity with CSS spec organization and terminology; in particular, all of the CSS Display introduction and CSS Display glossary terms should be well-understood.
  3. Split up into groups of 4-6 people.
  4. Within each group, starting with the Introduction, take turns reading each paragraph aloud. If anyone in the group didn't 100% understand that paragraph, discuss, draw pictures, and figure it out. If the entire group is confused, consult with other groups. If the entire event is confused, ask a spec expert: www-style, irc.w3.org:6665/#css, or Twitter.
  5. Continue reading and discussing until the end. Most groups finish the spec (minus the Flex Algorithm section) in about 8 hours (with breaks).

This entire process in one tweet.

Per-section Questions

Questions to ask yourself as we go through the spec…

  1. Did you understand the section? If not, what was confusing?
  2. Do you have suggestions for making the section more understandable?
  3. Do you have any feedback / suggestions for improvement on the technical content of the section?
  4. If you suggest adding more examples or figures, please sketch out what those would look like. Figures in the spec take the form of an image and a caption, all inside a <figure>. Examples in the spec take the form of a mix of explanatory text, code snippets, and images, all inside a <div class="example">.

Please send feedback (either typed up, or as scanned notes if you prefer) to the spec editors, preferably to the publicly-archived mailing list www-style@w3.org or alternatively directly to the spec editors (listed at the top of the spec).