W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > February 2002

Re: Why bother?

From: Frank Tobin <ftobin@neverending.org>
Date: Sun, 24 Feb 2002 03:59:06 -0500 (EST)
To: html-w3c <www-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20020224034154.N5647-100000@palanthas.neverending.org>
Simon Hill, at 17:36 +1100 on 2002-02-24, wrote:

> "Of course you understand that the recognition of hypocrisy and/or
> inconsistency between theory and practice is not a valid argument
> against the theory, right?" -- Eric Costello
> ( http://www.glish.com/ )

I may be misinterpeting what you are trying to say but...

I would argue that what the W3C does is not theory, but rather practice.
W3C's standards are an attempt to promote certain practices, and in world
of HTML, little headway has been made.

XML is another story, since *everyone* knows that it has to be
well-formed.  There is no second-guessing that that your data *must*
conform to this exectation, or else the onus is on *you* to fix it. With
HTML, the roles are reversed; the onus is on browser makers to cope with
your broken markup :(

I'm always amazed that HTML got to the horrendous state it did.  I'm a
programmer, and you can't get away with bogus syntax in any programmatic
language I know of.

My feeling is that the more implementations there are of of some part of a
protocol protocol, the more likely it degenerates into HTML-syndrome.
The same thing has occured with mail messages (many mailers are extremely
broken) and Gnutella clients.  The number of HTML editors is many, and
that is a primary cause of the problems.

Frank Tobin		http://www.neverending.org/~ftobin/
Received on Sunday, 24 February 2002 03:59:20 UTC

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