On Tue, Nov 13, 2012 at 3:42 PM, Trevor Parscal <tparscal@wikimedia.org> wrote:
It's important to note that the experiment I ran was a JavaScript hack that rearranged DOM elements on the fly. The correct way to do this (as long as we are busting out the "productized" word) is to make these changes before we send the HTML out to the client. This means making changes to the parser's output. This could 

Bug #11270 calls for this change to be made, and there's even a patch (but it's 3 years old, so don't get your hopes up). The patch changes the output of the parser, which affects all skins, and then adjusts the CSS for non-Vector skins to make them look the way they used to. Bug #41729 calls for the experimental stuff I did a while back to be cleaned up - basically what you are calling for now. There's also #11555 which relates to this issue, and may be solved by whatever we do to resolve the other 2 bugs.

Thanks for the explanation there. 

In the interest of not waiting any more, my instinct is to deploy the first JS-reliant version, and defer perfecting the implementation based on when patches get submitted. :) 

For IE 6/7 users, this implementation is slow enough that it can produce a flash of unstyled content. But for IE8-10, FF, Chrome, Opera we're good. And it's not like that problem isn't present in many other elements of the interface on projects like English Wikipedia... 

Steven Walling