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Re: [DRAFT] Heartbeat poll

From: Shelley Powers <shelleyp@burningbird.net>
Date: Sat, 01 Aug 2009 20:38:55 -0500
Message-ID: <4A74EE2F.5090401@burningbird.net>
To: John Foliot <jfoliot@stanford.edu>
CC: 'Maciej Stachowiak' <mjs@apple.com>, 'Sam Ruby' <rubys@intertwingly.net>, 'HTML WG' <public-html@w3.org>, 'Manu Sporny' <msporny@digitalbazaar.com>, "'Michael(tm) Smith'" <mike@w3.org>, 'Ian Hickson' <ian@hixie.ch>

>   
>>> Here's another compromise proposal: make @summary conformant but
>>> deprecated (not obsolete), and remove author instruction that tells
>>> authors not to use @summary as this directly contradicts WCAG 2.
>>>       
>> Thanks for making an alternate proposal. What do you think is the
>> substantial difference between "deprecated" and "obsolete" status? To
>> me they seem like pretty much the same thing. It's allowed, but not
>> recommended.
>>     
>
> The current W3C definition of deprecated and obsolete can be found at:
> http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/conform.html#deprecated
>
>   "Deprecated: A deprecated element or attribute is one that has been
> outdated by newer constructs. Deprecated elements are defined in the
> reference manual in appropriate locations, but are clearly marked as
> deprecated. Deprecated elements may become obsolete in future versions of
> HTML."
>
>   "Obsolete - An obsolete element or attribute is one for which there is
> no guarantee of support by a user agent. Obsolete elements are no longer
> defined in the specification, but are listed for historical purposes in
> the changes section of the reference manual."
>
> By my reading there are significant differences between either state. If
> WHAT WG does not make these distinctions then could you kindly point me to
> the WHAT WG definition of both or either term? (This might be an existing
> hole in the Draft Specification that perhaps needs to be plugged?)
>
>   

This one interests me above and beyond summary, as I wrote about 
recently[1].

There is no clear demarcation between deprecated and obsolete in HTML 5, 
as there was in HTML 4. Because of this lack, we're left with situations 
like summary, where we may want to replace the element at a future time, 
but we want it to be a valid element, and supported, until there is a 
replacement for its functionality, and the element can be gracefully 
made obsolete.

Now we have somewhat confusing language about conforming and not, which 
is vague, and will most likely cause confusion or consternation, again 
as we've seen with summary (and other attributes that went from valid in 
HTML 4 to obsolete in HTML 5, with no intervening period providing 
warning to web developers and designers that an element or attribute has 
the potential of not being supported in the future).

Needless to say, this is an item I'm also planning on addressing in the 
future. But, as we're now seeing, not having a disciplined and graceful 
way to end the life cycle of an element or attribute is going to cause 
problems.

Sorry for hijacking your discussion, Maciej and John. Just wanted to 
introduce the new topic for future discussion.
> JF
>
>   
Shelley

[1] http://realtech.burningbird.net/deprecated-is-now-obsolete
Received on Sunday, 2 August 2009 01:39:43 GMT

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