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Re: R: NEW: Issue #1544

From: Christophe Strobbe <christophe.strobbe@esat.kuleuven.be>
Date: Fri, 12 Aug 2005 10:58:34 +0200
Message-Id: <>
To: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org

At 09:20 12/08/2005, Roberto Scano - IWA/HWG wrote:

>-----Messaggio originale-----
>Da: w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org] Per conto
>di Luca Mascaro
>Inviato: venerd́ 12 agosto 2005 7.27
>A: 'Joe Clark'; 'WAI-GL'
>Oggetto: RE: NEW: Issue #1544
>In all of the last generation of graphical browser the major multimedia
>format works also with object.
>We must hold a compatibility with the old browser even if we invalidate the
>code? Therefore we do not damage the futures browser?
>Roberto Scano:
>I Agree with you. Also in ATAG we have discussed this and the
>world-biggest-embed-user-company reply this:
>"The decision to rely on the <embed> element is an old one. I could just
>as easily turn this conversation around and decry the W3's decision to
>declare the <embed> tag invalid with looking at its most common uses.
>So, let's just stay constructive. "
>So, all the problem is that W3C hasn't insert a proprietary tag inside HTML
>DTD (sigh!).

I seem to remember that the work on HTML 3 and HTML 4 was to some extent driven
by the need to keep up with and take a stance on the proprietary extensions
that browser manufacturers had been introducing into 'HTML' (sometimes as part
of their marketing scheme for 'DHTML'). In fact, HTML 3.0 never became a
recommendation because it was overtaken by events (read: proprietary 
Netscape's frameset & frames is an example of a proprietary extension that
became part of the recommendation. Microsoft's embed was not accepted. If that
is a reflection of the power relations in the HTML WG at the time, your 
about Microsoft looks a bit funny.

Sorry, I just couldn't resist.

>Someone wanna use embed? Ok, use a custom DTD, but don't ask to develop a
>W3C Rec. That ask to violate another W3C Rec. Only for business issues.

Just to cross the t's and dot the i's: custom DTDs are fine, but *only*
for very specific backward-compatibility issues. We know these issues, so
we should name them instead of just mentioning them generally (as the
previous public WD did). After all, custom DTDs are not new; see for
example IBM's modified XHTML1 DTD at 
(used until 2003 in their web accessibility guidelines). (There used to be an
SGML Catalog file at http://validator.w3.org/sgml-lib/ that referenced many 
examples.) We don't want to give every Tom, Dick and Harry a license to
invent new 'HTML 4 elements and attributes'.


Christophe Strobbe

Christophe Strobbe
K.U.Leuven - Departement of Electrical Engineering - Research Group on 
Document Architectures
Kasteelpark Arenberg 10 - 3001 Leuven-Heverlee - BELGIUM
tel: +32 16 32 85 51
Received on Friday, 12 August 2005 08:59:37 UTC

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