W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html-xml@w3.org > December 2010

Re: What problem is this task force trying to solve and why?

From: David Carlisle <davidc@nag.co.uk>
Date: Sat, 18 Dec 2010 17:39:00 +0000
Message-ID: <4D0CF1B4.6040301@nag.co.uk>
To: public-html-xml@w3.org
>  I see this tendency to want to change HTML to be more like XML as a
>  problem. It's natural for people who've worked with XML to want
>  familiarity, but it does not follow that HTML or the Web community
>  would be well served by changing HTML

Henri,

  I think people do recognise that making changes in a system as widely 
used as html
  are problematic, however the main problems that arise with xml/html 
alignment are
due to new features introduced with the html5 parser.


a well formed fragment such as:

   aaa<math><b>aaa</b><mtext>bbb</mtext></math>

parses as

   aaa<math></math><b>aaa</b><mtext>bbb</mtext>



with the math element being forced closed, and the tree completely 
re-arranged.

no previous version of html specified this, and no browser did this 
until very recently
as gecko and webkit started following the html5 algorithm.


The other problem has been more widely discussed (and the issues are 
more complex) but

aaa<div/>bbb

being parsed as a start tag with bbb inside the div is going to cause 
confusion forever.

HTML4 and XML specified different parsing rules, so your above argument 
might have been used
to say that the html parsing shouldn't change. However HTML5 has changed 
the parsing here
(to be bug compatible with common browsers) but being incompatible with 
editors and validators
using nsgmls or other parsers that did implement HTML4 as specified.

To introduce new parsing rules for /> at this stage but to make it so 
incompatible with XML is very hard to understand.

David
Received on Saturday, 18 December 2010 17:39:28 GMT

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