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Re: HTML version issue summary?

From: Matthew Raymond <mattraymond@earthlink.net>
Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2007 22:43:03 -0400
Message-ID: <462EC037.3040308@earthlink.net>
To: David Hyatt <hyatt@apple.com>
CC: public-html@w3.org

David Hyatt wrote:
> You would still have to worry about older browser versions even when  
> HTML5 support started to emerge.  If you only care about browsers  
> that fully support HTML5, then you'd just use the HTML5 doctype/ 
> version and let versions of IE that haven't opted in using the  
> doctype switch get your "older HTML4" version (along with older  
> versions of Safari, Firefox, etc.)

   That's not acceptable. It's the equivalent of opting into "really
standards mode", except that it only works for one browser version. If
other browser vendors reach a reasonable level of HTML5 support before
IE, all pages written for those browsers will have to use the IE opt-in
switch to get the best rendering for HTML5 rendering available in IE
even if their pages work fine on other browsers.

   Graceful degradation for legacy browsers isn't an excuse for not
enabling the best available rendering for a compliant document. When I
design pages with considerations for older browsers, I don't design
everything to look the same regardless of the browser. I simply design
the page to be accessible and have a
reasonable-but-not-necessarily-ideal presentation. (In other words, on
older browsers, content isn't stacked up on top of itself in a huge
mess, but the page may not be as pretty as it would be in a more modern
browser.) Graceful degradation is not the same as designing for the
lowest common denominator.

   A page written correctly for HTML5 that doesn't have an explicit
opt-in for a particular bug compatibility mode should be rendered with
the user agent's best attempt at HTML5 standards mode. Otherwise, people
will be forced to use custom opt-ins (possibly multiple opt-ins) just to
get their page working on multiple browsers.
Received on Wednesday, 25 April 2007 02:40:33 GMT

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