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Comments on draft-baker-xhtml-media-reg-02.txt

From: Bjoern Hoehrmann <derhoermi@gmx.net>
Date: Fri, 28 Sep 2001 05:22:57 +0200
To: mark.baker@canada.sun.com
Cc: www-html-editor@w3.org, www-html@w3.org
Message-ID: <1nn7rt4dbpeb337mf96clfi8iagval2bcr@4ax.com>
Hi,

   I strongly recommend to read RFC 2223 and the 1id-guidelines.txt
document, this draft violates a lot of rules written up there.

| Status of this Memo

|    This Internet-Draft will expire on August 5, 2001.

Not really.

| Abstract
| 
|    This document defines the 'application/xhtml+xml' MIME media type
|    for XHTML based markup languages; it is not intended to obsolete
|    any previous IETF documents, in particular RFC 2854 which registers
|    'text/html'.
| 
|    This document was prepared by members of the W3C HTML working group
|    based on the structure, and some of the content, of RFC 2854, the
|    registration of 'text/html'. Please send comments to
|    www-html@w3.org, a public mailing list (requiring subscription)
|    with archives at <http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-html/>.

The last statement is misplaced here. The abstract should provide a
concise and comprehensive overview of the purpose and contents of the
entire document, not information about where to send comments or about
who prepared this document.

| 1. Introduction
| 
|    In 1998, the W3C HTML working group began work on reformulating HTML
|    in terms of XML 1.0 [XML] and XML Namespaces [XMLNS].  The first
|    part of that work concluded in January 2000 with the publication of
|    the XHTML 1.0 Recommendation [XHTML1], the reformulation for HTML
|    4.01 [HTML401].
| 
|    Work continues in the HTML WG on XHTML Modularization (see
|    http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml-modularization), the decomposition of
|    XHTML 1.0 into modules that can be used to compose new XHTML based
|    languages, plus a framework for supporting this composition.

XHTML Modularization is now a recommendation, this should be stated
here, even if work continues on it. The recommendation can be found at
http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml-modularization/ not under the mentioned URI.

|    As of February 2001, the HTML WG has taken no official position on
|    what MIME media type should be used to describe XHTML 1.0 or any
|    other XHTML based language, except in the case where XHTML 1.0
|    documents satisfy certain additional requirements (see [XHTML1]
|    section 5.1) and can be described with "text/html" (see [TEXTHTML]).

... and as of September 2001?

|    This document only registers a new MIME media type,
|    'application/xhtml+xml'.  It does not define anything more than is
|    required to perform this registration.  The HTML WG expects to
|    publish further documentation on this subject, including but not
|    limited to, information about rules for which documents should and
|    should not be described with this new media type, and further
|    information about recognizing XHTML documents.

The HTML WG did realize, that section 2.2.4. of RFC 2048 requires the
registration proposal to clearly reference a published format
specification, thus, if it references XHTML 1.0, XHTML 1.0 may
automatically labeled with application/xhtml+xml? The draft implies
something else, this should be clarified.

|   Published specification:
|      XHTML 1.0 is now defined by W3C Recommendation;

Using "now" to refer to about 2 years in the past is IMO not
appropriate.

|      the latest published version is [XHTML1].

See below.

|   Applications which use this media type:
|      Some content authors have already begun hand and tool
|      authoring on the Web with XHTML 1.0.  However that content
|      is currently described as "text/html", allowing existing
|      Web browsers to process it without reconfiguration for a
|      new media type.

No, some sites use text/xml and application/xml, some even text/xhtml.

|      There is no experimental, vendor specific, or personal tree
|      predecessor to 'application/xhtml+xml', reflecting the fact that
|      no applications currently recognize it.

That's not a fact, that's plain wrong. Mozilla accepts this type.

|   Additional information:
| 
|      Magic number:
|        There is no single initial byte sequence that is always present
|        for XHTML files. However, Section 5 below gives some guidelines
|        for recognizing XHTML files.

RFC 3023 should be referenced here, since magic numbers for XML also
apply to XHTML.

|      File extension:
|        There are two known file extensions that are currently in use
|        for XHTML 1.0; ".xht" and ".xhtml".

.html is in use for XHTML.

|        It is not recommended that the ".xml" extension (defined in
|        [XMLMIME]) be used, as web servers may be configured to
|        distribute such content as type "text/xml" or "application/xml".

That's not a reason, file extensions don't matter. If I set up Apache to
deliver .xml files as application/xhtml+xml, that's fine. You may say,
that .xml is inappropriate, since it is associated with generic XML
types through RFC 3023. The same could be stated for .html, but I don't
think would be appropriate, since XHTML 1.0 is said to be the latest
version of HTML.

| 5. Recognizing XHTML files
| 
|    All XHTML files will have the string "<html" near the beginning
|    of the file.  Some will also begin with an XML declaration
|    which begins with "<?xml", though that alone does not indicate
|    an XHTML document.  All XHTML 1.0 documents will include a DOCTYPE
|    declaration that begins with "<!DOCTYPE html",

Certainly not,

  <!DOCTYPE
      html

is also a legal document type declaration.

|    All XHTML files should also include a declaration of the XHTML
|    namespace.  This should appear shortly after the string
|    "<html", and should read 'xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml"'.

This memo should not define conformance for XHTML documents, thus "All
XHTML files _may_ also..." and XHTML documents are documents, especially
in MIME envoirements, and not "files.

| 7. Security considerations
| 
|    The considerations for "text/html" as specified in [TEXTHTML] also
|    hold for 'application/xhtml+xml'.

And those of application/xml, thus reference RFC 3023.

|    The parameter is intended to closely match the semantics of the
|    "profile" attribute of the HEAD element as defined in [HTML401]
|    (section 7.4.4.3), except it is applied to the document as a whole
|    rather than just the META elements.  More specifically, the value of
|    the profile attribute is a URI that can be used as a name to
|    identify a language.  Though the URI need not be resolved in order
|    to be useful as a name, it could be a namespace, schema, or a
|    language specification.

Note that W3C publishes authoritative material on what should be used.

|      Accept: application/xhtml+xml; \
|        profile="http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml-basic/xhtml-basic10.dtd"

Remove that backslash, HTTP does not use the backslash to span headers
across multiple lines.

| 10. References

Please see http://www.rfc-editor.org/policy.html, RFC authors should
clearly state what references are normative and what are informative.

| [HTML401] Raggett, D., et al., "HTML 4.01 Specification", W3C
|          Recommendation, December 1999. Available at
|          <http://www.w3.org/TR/html4>
|          (or <http://www.w3.org/TR/1999/REC-html401-19991224>).

Only the latter URI is correct, the first refers to some latest version
of the specification, this should be clearly stated.

| [XHTML1] "XHTML 1.0: The Extensible HyperText Markup Language: A
|          Reformulation of HTML 4 in XML 1.0", W3C Recommendation,
|          January 2000. Available at <http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1>.

See above. [XHTML1] is said to be the latest version and this reference
points at the latest version, but the latest version may not be
published in January 2000.

| [XML]    "Extensible Markup Language (XML) 1.0", W3C Recommendation,
|          February 1998.  Available at <http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-xml>
|          (or <http://www.w3.org/TR/1998/REC-xml-19980210>).

I encourage the HTML WG to reference the Second Edition of XML 1.0.

| draft-baker-xhtml-media-reg-03: "amoung" -> "among"
| 
| draft-baker-xhtml-media-reg-04: Added copyright statements. 

A document that expires before it has been published with a changelog
from future versions... madness?

regards,
-- 
Björn Höhrmann { mailto:bjoern@hoehrmann.de } http://www.bjoernsworld.de
am Badedeich 7 } Telefon: +49(0)4667/981028 { http://bjoern.hoehrmann.de
25899 Dagebüll { PGP Pub. KeyID: 0xA4357E78 } http://www.learn.to/quote/
Received on Thursday, 27 September 2001 23:24:05 GMT

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