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

From: James Clark <jjc@jclark.com>
Date: Wed, 22 Dec 2010 07:58:05 +0700
Message-ID: <AANLkTikASOFQ2TmUgjL=xpXppsbchOdbQS=-KazUXKA7@mail.gmail.com>
To: Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>
Cc: public-html-xml@w3.org
On Tue, Dec 21, 2010 at 11:41 PM, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi> wrote:

> HTML.next is subject to the same backwards-compatibility constraints as
> HTML5.
>

The backwards compatibility constraint is that you can't break (any
significant amount of) existing content on the Web.  I appreciate and agree
with that constraint.

However, this constraint alone does not require the parsing
incompatibilities between HTML5 and XML.  The parsing incompatibilities only
become required when you add in the design goal to eliminate modes i.e. that
standards mode will be made as close as possible to quirks mode.  Now I can
certainly see the advantages of this design goal, but there are also
significant costs, and I think reasonable people can disagree about the
right tradeoff.

Let's take perhaps the most egregious example, that HTML5 requires that <br>
be treated like </br>. As of only a year or so ago, both WebKit and Gecko
had made the judgement that a different treatment of </br> was desirable in
standards mode (i.e. ignore it).  This is something that informed people can
different opinions on.

I think presenting XML/HTML5 incompatibilities as a necessary consequence of
backwards compatibility is deeply misleading.

James
Received on Wednesday, 22 December 2010 00:58:39 GMT

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