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Re: some thoughts on objections to publishing ""HTML 5 differences from HTML 4"

From: Lachlan Hunt <lachlan.hunt@lachy.id.au>
Date: Sun, 01 Jul 2007 19:39:06 +1000
Message-ID: <4687763A.7070301@lachy.id.au>
To: Steven Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
CC: "public-html@w3.org WG" <public-html@w3.org>

Steven Faulkner wrote:
> The rationale for dropping the headers,longdesc and summary attributes 
> was presumably formulated by the WHAT WG when the decisions to drop 
> these attributes was made.

As Hixie has tried to explain previously, the rationale for not 
including some was because, at the time, there was insufficient research 
of the issue and a lack of evidence to support their inclusion.

> I would like to see the rationale formally recorded in the differences 
> document

The purpose of the document is to describe the differences between HTML 
4.01 and the current state of HTML5, in order assist in the discovery of 
what has been changed.  While outlining the current state of affairs and 
giving a brief overview of known outstanding issues is helpful, 
explaining why certain changes have or have not yet been made with 
detailed rationale is well beyond the scope of the document.

I am adamant that the document must represent a neutral point of view on 
all issues.  Mentioning that there are open issues and listing a few of 
them in an objective way is fine, but attempting to rationalise issues, 
especially controversial issues, seriously risks affecting its neutrality.

In fact, there appears to be cases where the document isn't as neutral 
as it should be.  e.g.

| The following elements have been removed because they have not been
| used often, created confusion or can be handled by other elements:
| * acronym is not included because it has created lots of confusion.
|   Authors are to use abbr for abbreviations.

Saying that it created confusion only represents one side of the issue. 
  There are some people who believe both acronym and abbr should be 
included and are clearly distinct.  There are others that believe both 
should be allowed and defined synonymously.  There are probably others 
that believe acronym should be chosen over abbr because it has better 
support in IE.  In order to remain as neutral as possible, I recommend 
changing that text to the following:

* acronym is considered redundant in favour of abbr.

> in
> "3.6. Dropped Attributes"
> the text
> "Some attributes from HTML 4 are no longer allowed in HTML 5" 

I'm not sure how that proposed text addresses your issue at all.  In 
fact, it seems to make it worse because you're objection is based on 
your opinion that several of those features should be allowed and the 
lack of rationale for why they aren't.

With this in mind, would you accept the changes I proposed at the end of 
my previous mail [1], as a suitable resolution to this issue?

[1] http://www.w3.org/mid/46855A2E.7060908@lachy.id.au

Lachlan Hunt
Received on Sunday, 1 July 2007 09:39:17 UTC

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