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Re: ISSUE-4: Versioning, namespace URIs and MIME types

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Thu, 19 Feb 2009 11:56:12 +0000 (UTC)
To: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Cc: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.62.0902191150460.6209@hixie.dreamhostps.com>
On Thu, 19 Feb 2009, Sam Ruby wrote:
>
> The only way forward in situations like this is to start over with a new
> format.

That's one way forward, but not the only one. HTML5's approach has been to 
embrace the reality of implementations, and replace previous 
specifications with a definitive comprehensive set of requirements that 
matches implementations, including their really strange behaviour (such as 
"quirks mode" in HTML).

It's a whole hell of a lot more work than writing a new language from 
scratch, but it has the advantages of not requiring consumers to support 
two languages (one of which is effectively undefined) instead of just one, 
and of not requiring producers to start from scratch when updating to the 
new technologies (the latter is not a big problem for feed formats, where 
the feeds typically are generated from source material, but is quite a big 
deal for original-form formats like HTML, where the content exists only in 
the form of the "legacy" language).

-- 
Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Thursday, 19 February 2009 11:56:51 GMT

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