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Re: supporting both formats html5 & xhtml5 re: http://www.w3.org/html/wg/html5/#xhtml5

From: Shawn Medero <soypunk@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 19 Dec 2007 10:34:45 -0500
Message-ID: <994fc8d00712190734y3dea47derd9ba296d5232d541@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Dean Edridge" <dean@55.co.nz>
Cc: public-html@w3.org

On 12/19/07, Dean Edridge <dean@55.co.nz> wrote:

> If there are any genuine reasons why both serialisations can't be
> supported by all user-agents I'd like to hear them.

This is all I am asking... when putting together an issue in the HTML
WG Tracker, I need to collect data that presents as much info about
the pros & cons.

I'm not in a position to make proposals, my experience with HTML &
XHTML involves authoring, parsing, and info retrieval against large
data sets... I've not written any aspect of a general user-agent
implementation to date and have no plans to. On the other hand, I'm
familiar enough with the concepts that I've volunteered to collect,
refine, and track issues for the working group.

With that in mind, I can think of two use cases that are sorta linked:

1. Mac OS X Dashboard Widgets
2. HTML editing software

Apple wanted HTML desktop widgets but didn't want to get into of the
business of XML. If I had to guess, they did this because:

1. Authors generally know how to write HTML but not XML
2. HTML editing software that has to understand but HTML and XML is
more complex to write, test, and support. To suggest that support both
HTML and XHTML is no big deal underplays the problems with things like
serialization and namespaces.

These seem like valid concerns with the benefit that Dashboard is more
stable for OS X users and Dashboard widgets are easier to write for
Apple's many 3rd party developers. I'll leave the exercise of vetting
these details to people much smarter than myself.

<rant>

A general meta-reflection about raising issues on the mailing list:

I really wish people would somewhat extract themselves from the issues
(It is impossible to be entirely emotionally detached from them, we
are human after all.)... when someone asks for more info ... it is not
a personal attack against you or your beliefs. The majority of
specification change request come with too little information to be
actionable. (I don't expect this to ... nor is it clear that it
should... change.) So the discussion has to start on the mailing list,
irc, etc to fill in all the gaps.

I think it is great that you are passionate about your areas of
interest Dean, without that spirit this (and other) specification
would go nowhere. I'd just like to see cooler heads prevail in most
cases. (In fact, I may be overreacting as response to the unnecessary
blow up over the <video> container & codec issues...)

When wearing my own working group hat (actually, all I have a t-shirt
from Boston), I'm doing my best to stay impartial and document
information using reason and logic If I ask you (or anyone) to clarify
something, I'm not challenging your ideals of "one web" - I'm
potentially trying to strengthen your case. It just may happen that
the results have the opposite effect of weaken it too... I don't have
any vested interest in either outcome. I'm not employed by any major
browser vendor, accessibility software maker, large internet company,
etc... I just want to see the best outcome for the web in the spirit
of something like Dan Connolly's story about <video> and his family:
http://www.w3.org/QA/2007/12/when_will_html_5_support_soone.html

</rant>

Shawn
Received on Wednesday, 19 December 2007 15:34:57 GMT

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