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RE: XMLHttpRequest Comments from W3C Forms WG

From: Klotz, Leigh <Leigh.Klotz@xerox.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Dec 2009 09:28:37 -0800
Message-ID: <E254B0A7E0268949ABFE5EA97B7D0CF40978E16E@USA7061MS01.na.xerox.net>
To: "Maciej Stachowiak" <mjs@apple.com>
Cc: "Jonas Sicking" <jonas@sicking.cc>, "Boris Zbarsky" <bzbarsky@mit.edu>, "WebApps WG" <public-webapps@w3.org>, "Forms WG" <public-forms@w3.org>

I'm sorry we didn't get a chance to meet you in person at the recent TPAC meeting, though I did see you briefly at the coffee break.

I'm glad to hear that the re-factoring is in progress and it appears that there's general agreement with the goal of modularization, especially for previously modularized concepts such as URI. 

We certainly don't want to block progress, and since there appears to be no technical barrier to our request (merely time), I believe the Forms WG would be pleased with a result of our comment if the result were that the WebApps WG agreed to add an editorial note to the current draft of XHR that, prior to exiting CR, the XHR document will remove dependencies on HTML5 from XHR and replace them with the appropriate modularized definitions.  If this comes to pass, the Forms WG will monitor the issue at future transitions, and hope for a successful resolution.

Thank you,


-----Original Message-----
From: Maciej Stachowiak [mailto:mjs@apple.com] 
Sent: Thursday, December 17, 2009 7:41 PM
To: Klotz, Leigh
Cc: Jonas Sicking; Boris Zbarsky; WebApps WG; Forms WG
Subject: Re: XMLHttpRequest Comments from W3C Forms WG

On Dec 17, 2009, at 3:15 PM, Klotz, Leigh wrote:

> OK, so is the conclusion that XHR is implementable only in HTML5 and 
> should be re-titled "XMLHttpRequest in HTML5" or something similar?

I think your premise is false, and I don't such a retitling would be helpful. The XHR spec does not require a full implementation of HTML5.  
It only references some concepts from HTML5. The XHR spec could be implemented in an SVG or HTML4 or XHTML 1.0 implementation that did not support most aspects of HTML5 at all, as long as it could satisfy the requirements implied by those definitions. Your proposed title change would imply that the XHR spec could only be implemented by an
HTML5 UA, but that is not accurate.

All we have here is a case of suboptimal factoring of the specifications, so that some concepts of very general applicability to the Web platform are presently only defined in HTML5. Some of them are in the process of being broken out, some of them already have been broken out, and more are likely to be broken out in the future.  
XMLHttpRequest is in fact a pretty good example of factoring something out of HTML5, and even though we haven't cleaned up its whole chain of dependencies, I do not think that is a reason to stuff it back into HTML5, or to block progress on perfecting its dependencies.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jonas Sicking [mailto:jonas@sicking.cc]
> Sent: Thursday, December 17, 2009 3:14 PM
> To: Klotz, Leigh
> Cc: Boris Zbarsky; WebApps WG; Forms WG
> Subject: Re: XMLHttpRequest Comments from W3C Forms WG
> As Ian already has mentioned. No one is disputing that most of these 
> things should be factored out of the HTML5 spec. But so far no one has 
> stepped up to that task. Until someone does we'll have to live with 
> the reality that these things are defined in the HTML5 spec and the
> HTML5 spec alone.
> / Jonas
> On Thu, Dec 17, 2009 at 2:40 PM, Klotz, Leigh <Leigh.Klotz@xerox.com> 
> wrote:
>> Great!  It sounds like more progress is being made on both putting 
>> experience from implementations back into specifications, and in 
>> modularizing the XHR document references, since it will give a better 
>> place than HTML5 for reference.
>> Leigh.
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Boris Zbarsky [mailto:bzbarsky@MIT.EDU]
>> Sent: Thursday, December 17, 2009 2:38 PM
>> To: Klotz, Leigh
>> Cc: WebApps WG; Forms WG
>> Subject: Re: XMLHttpRequest Comments from W3C Forms WG
>> On 12/17/09 2:22 PM, Klotz, Leigh wrote:
>>> Thank you for the clarification.  Surely then this ought to be fixed 
>>> with an IETF or W3C document describing this fact
>> After some pushback, there is in fact such a document being worked 
>> on.
>> It's not quite far enough to reference normatively last I checked....
>>> Is it defined in http://www.w3.org/html/wg/href/draft ?
>> Yep.
>> -Boris
Received on Friday, 18 December 2009 17:31:22 UTC

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