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Re: The non-polyglot elephant in the room

From: Michael[tm] Smith <mike@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2013 15:09:10 +0900
To: Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>
Cc: public-html WG <public-html@w3.org>, "www-tag@w3.org List" <www-tag@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20130122060909.GO46651@sideshowbarker>
Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>, 2013-01-21 11:46 +0200:

> I am opposed to this working group encouraging polyglot markup or
> appearing to encourage polyglot markup, because I don't want to spend
> time at implementing something as useless as polyglot validation

Although I'd word things a bit differently than that, I also want to say
for the record that I specifically don't want to end up being pressured
into implementing support for it in the W3C validator. Along with
personally believing that adding such an option would actually be bad for
authors, I'd much rather be spending the time on implementing things that I
actually do care a lot about and that I think are very useful for authors
in practice -- such as bringing the ARIA checking in conformance with the
current HTML spec.

And as far as the existence of the option being bad for authors, I think
along with the other reasons I've mentioned in this thread, and the ones
you have, it's bad for authors because it introduces another perceived
requirement that a lot of them are going to feel compelled to try to meet
-- whether they actually understand what it even is or why it's there.

What I mean is that many authors are going to try the option, find that
their documents fail to validate under it, and then feel the need to fiddle
with documents that are otherwise fine just in order to fix "errors"
reported by the Polyglot option.

On top of that, there's the additional opportunity for more fun with the
really negative social dynamic of markup pedants who like to run other
people's documents through the validator so they can then point out to the
authors, Haha, you think you know so much about markup, but your document
doesn't even pass the W3C validator without errors.

I really don't think authors would be well-served by us adding the option,
and certainly I don't think that we have a large number of authors who are
crying out for us to add it.

  --Mike

-- 
Michael[tm] Smith http://people.w3.org/mike
Received on Tuesday, 22 January 2013 06:09:23 GMT

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