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XHTML Basic and XHTML modularization: Introduction

From: Jonny Axelsson <jonny@metastasis.net>
Date: Tue, 22 Feb 2000 13:56:05 +0100
Message-Id: <>
To: www-html@w3.org
<blurb>First I would like to commend you on those two working drafts, I
think (at least in this forum) everyone agrees it is a step in the right

Having a minimal number of elements as such has never been a primary design
goal for HTML, and it should probably not be so either. Still, HTML 4.0 has
91 elements (77 in strict) and 120 attributes, and that is *a lot*. The
obligatory modules in XHTML have a total of 35 elements. Still more than an
ideal of no more elements than the number of fingers and toes (ie less than
25 for most people), but at least no more than fingers + toes + teeth...

<me>I have never before actively participated in standardization
discussions, but have read most everything since the HTML 0.9 onwards. In
this interval I have mainly worked for the (Norwegian) government
preparing, organizing and designing large numbers of heterogenous documents
for www publication. The last four years or so I have evangelized CSS
(making me one of those "CSS people doing whatever they can to proliferate
CSS" if not in the standards themselves, at least in the world at large)
and metadata, both of which have suffered from a notable catch-22.

Teaching HTML and doing the occational Perl hack (which caused me to
dislike optional tags...) convinced me that reducing the number of
elements, many kept for backward compability, has practical as well as
aestethic value and I made a voluntary subset of HTML 4.0 Strict I called
HTML 4.0 core (essentially XHTML Basic based on HTML). That document is
irrelevant now, but I noticed I was more radical in my proposal than the
working group has been in XHTML Basic.</me></blurb>

What I will propose is this:

1. Depreciate STRONG
2. Move CODE, VAR, KBD and SAMP into a separate module
3. Probably depreciate ACRONYM and BDO
4. Depreciate IMG (the OBJECT discussion elsewhere)
5. (a number of minor issues)
Received on Tuesday, 22 February 2000 07:57:37 UTC

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