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XHTML 2 - not backward compatible?

From: <k.m.duncan@lineone.net>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 2002 00:24:46 -0000
To: www-html-editor@w3.org
Message-ID: <3DFE6ECE.16826.B75533@localhost>

From what I read XHTML 2 is not intended to be backward compatible with its earlier 
versions (HTML4 /XHTML 1.0 / XHTML 1.1).

Does this then imply that documents conforming to XHTML 2 may not render properly in 
older browsers (e.g. NN4.x)?

Working in a community where users are reliant on many different types of browser - 
some old, some new I can imagine a situation where in order to "conform" to the latest 
standard (as and when presumably XHTML 2 comes as a W3C recommendation) I need 
to code to XHTML 2.0 While on the other hand to provide support for users running older 
browsers I need to provide a second set of pages "pre-XHTML 2"? - I really don't think 
so :-(

Also I would be interested in knowing how this ties in with Web Accessibility Initiative and  
WCAG. - If XHTML 2 is not backward compatible, does this not seem to suggest that 
there may be inherent issues re. accessibility where people are stuck with old browsers?

On the other hand I sometimes wonder exactly how many browsers/platforms/display 
types should be catered for when designing pages ;-) 
Am I really expected to cater for 2^n browsers (where n increases exponentially with 

Presumably its only a matter of time before XHTML2 Mobile Profile comes along?
Im still looking for an example of something written in XHTML Mobile Profile which will 
work with WAP1.1 browser - but that's another story...

Oh what fun Fun FUN :P

Keith Duncan
Received on Monday, 16 December 2002 19:39:13 UTC

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