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Re: CfC: Publish HTML5 Microdata as First Public Working Draft and a new HTML5 Working Draft

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Tue, 12 Jan 2010 02:17:01 +0000 (UTC)
To: "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>
Cc: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>, HTML WG Public List <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.62.1001120201210.13493@hixie.dreamhostps.com>
On Tue, 12 Jan 2010, Ian Hickson wrote:
> On Mon, 11 Jan 2010, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
> > On Mon, Jan 11, 2010 at 6:17 PM, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch> wrote:
> > > On Mon, 11 Jan 2010, Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
> > >>
> > >> Alternately: Ian, would you be OK with changing the title from 
> > >> "HTML5 Microdata" to either "HTML+Microdata" or "HTML Microdata" or 
> > >> something similar?
> > >
> > > Not really... that would give people the impression that Microdata 
> > > wasn't part of HTML5, which I believe it should be.
> > 
> > As opposed to giving the impression that it's part of HTML?
> 
> Having just "HTML" in the name makes it sound like it's an independent 
> spec that one can consider part of HTML, or ignore. It makes it sound 
> like a candidate for "relevant specification", in HTML5 terms. I believe 
> Microdata should be considered an integral part of HTML5. Whether that 
> is by having a single specification for HTML5, or having HTML5 split 
> into modules with Microdata being one of them, I don't really mind. I 
> would be fine with calling the draft "HTML Microdata" or just 
> "Microdata", provided that the spec clearly stated it was part of an 
> HTML5 family of specifications. What I object to is making Microdata a 
> second-class citizen that, e.g., validators can validly claim is not 
> part of HTML5.

One possible compromise would be to have a WG decision that we publish it 
independently for now, but established clear objective criteria under 
which the spec would automatically become a part of the main HTML5 spec 
again. For example, we could say that if three browsers with more than 1% 
usage share according to the Wikipedia "Usage share of web browsers" pie 
chart each shipped support for the Microdata API in their consumer release 
builds, that we would automatically add the feature back in. Or we could 
find some metric based on large sites publishing data using Microdata, or 
something else.

The point is that if the reason for excluding Microdata from HTML5 really 
is that it isn't mature nor a market success yet, then that should mean 
that we can agree that if it becomes mature and a market success, it 
should become part of HTML5 again. And if we do agree on that, we should 
decide on objective criteria now, so that we don't move the goalposts later.

(The argument that Microdata should be taken out of HTML5 because it can 
be reused in other specifications completely misses the point of Microdata.)

-- 
Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Tuesday, 12 January 2010 02:17:32 GMT

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