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Re: Decentralised extensibility idea (ISSUE-41)

From: Aryeh Gregor <Simetrical+w3c@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 17 Jan 2010 07:10:53 -0500
Message-ID: <7c2a12e21001170410y4bc49671lf5067c9bcb6af51a@mail.gmail.com>
To: Leif Halvard Silli <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no>
Cc: Toby Inkster <tai@g5n.co.uk>, Philip J├Ągenstedt <philipj@opera.com>, "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>
On Sun, Jan 17, 2010 at 12:56 AM, Leif Halvard Silli
<xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no> wrote:
> You know, if you think so, then you should work for removing @data-*
> from the spec. And don't forget @class either. Because both of them
> allows to sneak across the borderline without your attention.

It's always *possible*.  You could always shoehorn nonstandard data
somewhere.  You could hide it in the least significant bits of in-page
images if you wanted.  But at least the obvious extension points
should have the "applicable specification" requirement added, so that
at those extension points, widely-used validators will only validate
things they know are are open standards.

In practice, it seems like authors of language extensions don't want
to hide in class/title/etc. (Microformats notable excepted).  It's
cumbersome and inflexible.  So you can either use a nasty hack (data-*
makes it only slightly less nasty) and validate, or have much more
freedom but not validate unless you standardize.  That's better than
nothing.

> All that can sneak through a validator with @profile can also sneak
> through it without @profile. @profile can not be used for blessing
> something that isn't already part of HTML5. @profile is not something
> which lets you invent your own HTML elements and attributes.

Why is your proposal preferable to inventing your own elements and
attributes?  As far as I can tell, the only advantage is it encourages
people to try sneaking past validators with extensions that haven't
been verified as open standards.  IMO that's a *bad* thing.

> @profile is for creating open, well-conceived standards. Microdata as
> well, btw. I have no clue how Microdata validation will work, but I
> thought - in addition to certain centrally kept vocabs - it was meant
> for individually developed vocabularies. Even the W3 and the WHATwg
> would not be powerful enough to keep track of all the "applicable"
> vocabularies that could be created for Microdata.

"The item type must be a type defined in an applicable specification."
http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/microdata.html#items

This means that yes, microdata vocabularies must be whitelisted by
validator authors to validate.  They don't have to be approved by the
W3C or WHATWG, though.  If a community develops that independently and
responsibly manages microdata vocabularies and has a list that's
clearly specified, I'd expect validators to whitelist all the
vocabularies on that community's list.

Of course, vocabularies will still *work* even if they don't validate,
as always -- you can still *use* them just fine.  They just won't get
the imprimatur of a trusted validator until they are, in fact, open
standards.  (Assuming that trusted validators are pro-standards, which
has historically been the case.)
Received on Sunday, 17 January 2010 12:11:28 UTC

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