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Why "Platform Core" and "HTML5" are in the same spec

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Tue, 18 Nov 2008 01:36:16 +0000 (UTC)
To: Nikunj Mehta <nikunj.mehta@oracle.com>
Cc: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.62.0811180131000.1041@hixie.dreamhostps.com>

On Mon, 17 Nov 2008, Nikunj Mehta wrote:
> 
> What Ian considers Platform core [1] as listed in [2] includes a wide 
> variety of things that don't have much to do with HTML at all. SQL 
> (5.10.2) and unstructured storage (5.10.1) are good examples. The only 
> reasons for keeping these parts in the HTML5 spec that I have seen are 
> that these pieces are stable and the same editor would be working on 
> these sections as the Platform Core. Neither sound good enough reasons 
> to me.

They're not particularily good reasons, but splitting those two parts up 
would delay progress by a year or more, and that is unacceptable IMHO.

When work on HTML6 begins, maybe this can be made a priority then.


> Another pet peeve I have is that the discrimination of what is in and 
> what is outside the scope of HTML5.
> 
> 1. The distinction of a primitive from a specific use of the primitive 
> is rather arbitrary.  For example, it is not clear why offline Web 
> application caching is treated as a primitive. If anything, the 
> primitives are local proxying and background worker threads. Why should 
> application manifest and GET request proxying be built in to HTML and 
> not another data format or another set of methods?

I don't really understand the question. Could you elaborate?


> 2. Current features of browsers are sometimes being standardized in 
> other specs. As an example, XMLHttpRequest is not a part of HTML5 even 
> though that is part of most current browsers and is core to the browser 
> platform.

XHR was part of HTML5. It was extracted because someone volunteered to 
edit it. That's really all it takes.


> I understand that many decisions are based on available editors and 
> required expertise, but then let's justify it as a design principle.

It's the "Priority of Constituencies" principle.

   http://www.w3.org/html/wg/html5/principles/#priority-of-constituencies

Concerns of the spec authors (my having time to do the actual editing, in 
this case) are higher in priority than theoretical correctness of design 
(having the "right" split between spec components).

-- 
Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Tuesday, 18 November 2008 01:36:53 UTC

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