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Re: Should we Publish a Language Specification?

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Mon, 24 Nov 2008 03:48:13 +0000 (UTC)
To: Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de>
Cc: "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.62.0811240340350.17401@hixie.dreamhostps.com>

On Sun, 23 Nov 2008, Julian Reschke wrote:
> Ian Hickson wrote:
> > ...
> > > Why is a/@rel not useful for the browser platform?
> > 
> > Some <a rel=""> values (e.g. stylesheet) are, others (e.g. tag) are 
> > not. I just meant to refer to rel=tag above.
> You mean the actual string "tag" as rel value?


> > > The latter ones are useful features of HTML5 as a document markup 
> > > language, so of course they should be in.
> > 
> > One could also say that the scripting APIs are useful features of 
> > HTML5 as an application markup language, so of course they should be 
> > in too.
> As an application markup language yes, as a document markup language, 
> no.

Since HTML is an application markup language, I think it would make sense 
for its specification to treat it as such.

> > How do you draw the line between "document" and "application", 
> > especially given the state of the Web? Personally I think trying to 
> > draw a distinction is old-fashioned. The Web has moved on, even static 
> > pages have script (the penetration of analytics tools like Google 
> > Analytics and its competitors is surprisingly high).
> I think the state of the web really doesn't affect that distinction, and 
> it's still a useful distinction to have.

I disagree. Is the HTML5 spec a document or an application?

You didn't reply to my question. How do you draw the line between 
"document" and "application"?

> > > I think I said before that in *my* opinion, forms submission could 
> > > be a separate module, as it isn't needed as part of the *document* 
> > > markup language.
> > 
> > Should elements like <canvas> be in, then? How about <input> and 
> > <output>?
> I already said <canvas> doesn't belong into it, as it requires script 
> execution to be useful. I also talked about forms before; I personally 
> think the document markup language shouldn't include them, but I do 
> realize that this may be a minority opinion.

So you're really asking for a specification that doesn't even define the 
whole of HTML, let alone the implementation requirements and APIs. I guess 
it's one option. Could you elaborate on why we should do this?

I'm not sure how the chairs want to proceed at this point, but I think 
that if the group is to adopt a proposal like yours, we will need a lot 
more detail as to exactly how you propose to split the spec, as well as a 
clear rationale.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Monday, 24 November 2008 03:48:49 UTC

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