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Re: Things in HTML that I disagree with (Was: evidence of harm)

From: Shelley Powers <shelley.just@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 25 Jun 2009 15:59:45 -0500
Message-ID: <643cc0270906251359x1f0d5f32hb70c5d02194138d8@mail.gmail.com>
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: Shelley Powers <shelleyp@burningbird.net>, public-html@w3.org
On Thu, Jun 25, 2009 at 3:32 PM, Ian Hickson<ian@hixie.ch> wrote:
> On Thu, 25 Jun 2009, Shelley Powers wrote:
>>
>> Ian has mentioned that parts of the HTML5 specification have been
>> "edited" by others. I have to wonder, though, if there has been a case
>> where Ian has disagreed with the contents of the edit--strongly
>> disagreed, as he does with topics under discussion, such as
>> @summary--but still incorporated it into HTML5?
>
> The text of HTML5 was all written by me, but I do disagree with several
> parts of it. These include, but are not limited to:
>
>  - The allowance of /> syntax on certain tags, e.g. <br/>, in the
>   text/html syntax
>
>  - The allowance of the style="" attribute on all elements
>
>  - The inclusion of <div> as a valid element
>
>  - The use of headers="" on <th>
>
>  - The inclusion of the microdata section
>
>  - The semantics of transforms affecting paths in canvas
>
>  - The allowance of "xmlns" attributes all over the place
>
>  - The messy situation regarding parsing <script> in SVG
>
>  - The handling of document.write() in <script> in SVG
>
> The list goes on; this isn't by any means an exhaustive list. In each of
> these cases, the spec says something that differs from what I'd like it to
> say, because arguments were made that showed that my opinion isn't the
> most practical solution.

I would like to see how some of these arguments were coached. Could
you point out in whatever mailing list is appropriate, the arguments
discussing, say keeping the div element?

As for microdata section, you completely overrode the preferences of
every person who submitted a use case, in favor of your own invention.
I find it odd (puzzling, confusing, flabbergasting) that you include
it as an example where you disagreed with the section, but included it
anyway because "arguments were shown that your opinion isn't the most
practical solution".

> The complete list would in fact be huge; requiring compatibility with
> legacy documents forces us to make many compromises that I personally am
> unhappy about, but that haven't even been discussed because the backwards-
> compatibility principle is overriding. (e.g. location.search is a
> ridiculous name for that API, but there's no point considering renaming it
> to location.query since that would break millions of pages.)
>

Yes, the web is a messy place. I'm surprised that you're willing to
continue on as sole author of HTML 5, if you're so unhappy with the
state of the web, and the markup you're being forced to live with.

And just wait until you see what people do with your new elements.
It's bound to be messier, still.


>
>> I could be wrong in both regards, though. The HTML5 specification could
>> contain sections to which Ian strongly disagrees
>
> This is indeed the case. I tend not to make much noise about those
> sections because once an argument has been presented explaining through
> reason or based on research why I am wrong, I move on.
>

At this point in time, it's not unreasonable to see some of these
other arguments, though, so we can compare with your currents ones
against @summary. Part of the process of specification writing must
be, should be, consistency. I'd try to find them myself, but I
wouldn't be able to recognize which arguments given were those that
actually made you include the disagreed with section.

Thanks in advance.

Shelley
Received on Thursday, 25 June 2009 21:00:22 GMT

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