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Re: "placeholder link"

From: Sander Tekelenburg <st@isoc.nl>
Date: Mon, 25 Jun 2007 15:14:01 +0200
Message-Id: <p06240660c2a569a5f79a@[]>
To: public-html@w3.org

At 09:46 +0200 UTC, on 2007-06-25, Simon Pieters wrote:

> On Mon, 25 Jun 2007 04:24:10 +0200, Sander Tekelenburg <st@isoc.nl> wrote:
>> [...] So why exactly should
>> <a>content</a> be defined as conforming?
> Why not? What's wrong with <a>?

It's semantically wrong. In other places HTML5 does a lot of work to help
authors produce more semantically sound markup. Exceptions may be necessary,
but not without a good reason.

In the grander scheme of things, this matters because it affects what
conformance means. I appreciate the balancing act Henri describes
<http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2007Jun/0694.html>. In this
particular case it seems to me that "The notion of document conformance is
partly a way to try to sway
author behavior to a "good" direction" should be given more weight.

> It's conforming HTML4.

Sure, but we're trying to move to HTML5 for a reason aren't we? ;)

(Btw, I hardly know SGML, but might it not be that that was the only reason
<a> needed to be considered valid in HTML 4?)

> It's shorter than <span>

I don't think three characters weigh up against the semantic argument.
(Besides, IMO element/attribute names should be short but descriptive, so at
least to english speaking authors they [1] give a hint about what they're for
and [2] are easier to remember/guess. Short for shortness' sake is only
useful to a few Perl programmers ;))

> and the stylesheet rules will be simpler.

How? Going with Lachlan's example, how is

menu a { /* Styles for current page */ }
menu a:link { /* Styles for other links */ }

simpler than:

menu span { /* Styles for current page */ }
menu a:link { /* Styles for other links */ }

or even

menu { /* Styles for current page */ }
menu a:link { /* Styles for other links */ }


> Saying that your cleanup tool will mess it up can go for anything.

Perhaps, yes. It just occured to me -- perhaps this case is not anywhere near

Sander Tekelenburg
The Web Repair Initiative: <http://webrepair.org/>
Received on Monday, 25 June 2007 13:14:54 UTC

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