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Re: What's the problem? "Reuse of 1998 XHTML namespace is potentially misleading/wrong"

From: Robin Berjon <robin@berjon.com>
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2009 11:54:31 +0100
Cc: Robert J Burns <rob@robburns.com>, Jonas Sicking <jonas@sicking.cc>, Lachlan Hunt <lachlan.hunt@lachy.id.au>, "L. David Baron" <dbaron@dbaron.org>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>, plh@w3.org
Message-Id: <44B7FB59-2E72-47F5-81BB-E2C5DAE2B8EB@berjon.com>
To: Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de>

On Feb 12, 2009, at 11:28 , Julian Reschke wrote:
> Robin Berjon wrote:
>> On Feb 12, 2009, at 10:30 , Julian Reschke wrote:
>>> The problem is that you do not always have context.
>>>
>>> For instance, XHTML elements can appear in many other XML  
>>> documents, re-using the document markup semantics. In this case,  
>>> you frequently have a single element, and no context at all.
>> That's a problem of the host language. Some elements need context  
>> and that's the end of their story. I don't think that <li> is  
>> broken because you don't know what type of list item it is without  
>> its container, or
>
> Where's the problem here? If some vocabulary uses <xhtml:li>, that  
> means "this is a list item". The container format may define its own  
> list, for instance.

For one the context gives you meaning for its previous/next siblings  
which is otherwise unclear.

>> that svg:rect is broken because while it retains its semantics it  
>> cannot be rendered without a container to define its viewport.
>> If a host language reuses from XHTML, then it's up to it to provide  
>> the necessary context for interpretation.
>
> But that's a new situation. Until today, to find out what xhtml:foo  
> means, you checked the HTML 4.01 or XHTML 1.whatever spec.
>
> Once we allow two different parties to continue development of the  
> language, there's no single answer anymore.
>
> So this breaks something that worked just fine before.

It didn't work just fine before, we had a broken community which  
couldn't agree on where to take HTML and how. In fact we still have  
that, only we have a formal arrangement that hopefully might make it  
easier for them to talk together. My only push-back here is in using  
pseudo-technical arguments (vocabulary clashes, term reuse, etc.) to  
point fingers when what is really needed is someone with a little time  
to either resolve the differences or at the very least document them.

-- 
Robin Berjon - http://berjon.com/
     Feel like hiring me? Go to http://robineko.com/
Received on Thursday, 12 February 2009 10:55:09 UTC

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