Re: HTML 4.0/SGML, (#PCDATA)* problem in TEXTAREA

Paul Prescod (
Thu, 31 Jul 1997 11:54:17 -0400

Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 31 Jul 1997 11:54:17 -0400
From: Paul Prescod <>
Subject: Re: HTML 4.0/SGML, (#PCDATA)* problem in TEXTAREA

Arnoud Galactus Engelfriet wrote:
> Well, you need to have *some* way to handle extensions and future
> HTML elements. It is unfortunately not realistic to ask that all
> authors write documents that completely conform to a specific
> standard, or that browsers ask for specific versions and that servers
> filter out the newer elements on the fly.

Only unrealistic because it would require too many people to change now,
not because it was destined to be unrealistic
> Perhaps I'm being too simple here, but if I'm tokenizing a document
> with an SGML parser, and I encounter the element FOOBAR that I've
> never heard of, can't the code that interfaces with the parser simply
> ignore the parser's error message and pretend it never saw that element?
> The parser is happy because it reported its error, and the handler
> ignores it, so everything is ok, right?

Maybe. Or maybe in the DTD that the element actually comes from, the
existence of the element implies the close tag of the containing

<P>A para

Does the text Abcdef go in the paragraph or not? In the BODY or not?
Depends on whether it is allowed as content of either of those.

 Paul Prescod