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Re: Regarding HTML5 <time>

From: Jukka K. Korpela <jukka.k.korpela@kolumbus.fi>
Date: Sat, 05 Nov 2011 21:30:10 +0200
Message-ID: <4EB58EC2.3020700@kolumbus.fi>
To: public-html-comments@w3.org
11/4/2011 5:10 PM, mathew wrote:

> I'll keep this short:
> The <time> element was the single HTML5 feature that I saw the most compelling need for.

I can imagine several _possible_ ways in which <time> might turn out to 
be useful if supported by relevant software. But I do not know about any 
actual support, and I don't see what might possibly be a compelling 
reason to use <time>.

> A <data> element would also be a good idea,

Since everything in an HTML document is data, I don't see the point.

> but timestamps are so commonplace that
> they deserve their own element -- just like we give emphasis its own element rather
 > than using <span> with a CSS style.

Most people give emphasis by using <i> or <b>, or maybe <em> or 
<strong>, quite often by using formatting commands in some web authoring 
software. These elements have been with us longer than CSS, so there has 
never been a serious temptation to use <span> with a CSS style for emphasis.

I have nothing specific against <time>, but I have not seen any evidence 
of its being actually useful. And there are surely many other other 
phrase-level constructs for which some element _could_ be defined. For 
example, a sentence is a common construct, but we don't have any 
<sentence> markup - even though it is possible to present several 
_possibilities_ of utilizing such markup in software.

So it might be interesting to know why <time> is there but not, for 
example, <length> or <mass> or <temperature>. I guess the reason behind 
<time> is that search engines are supposed to notice <time pubdate>. 
Does any search engine do anything in that direction?

Wait... I seem to have missed a recent change:
"Goodbye time, datetime, and pubdate. Hello data and value."

So if any search engine tried anything with <time>, it was a wasted 
effort, it seems.

I don't expect them to get excited about <data> anytime soon.

Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
Received on Saturday, 5 November 2011 19:30:45 UTC

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