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Re: The HTML Element

From: Arthur Wiebe <webmaster@awiebe.com>
Date: Wed, 18 Jun 2003 12:01:32 -0400
Message-ID: <3EF08CDB.8020503@awiebe.com>
To: Andy Holmes <aholmes84@shaw.ca>, www-html@w3.org

Andy Holmes wrote:

> Arthur Wiebe wrote:
>
>> Reinthaler, Frank wrote:
>>
>>> I agree XHTML is HTML and the root element shouldn't change.
>>>
>>> regards,
>>> Frank Reinthaler
>>>
>> I don't agree. XHTML is XML-based and HTML isn't. HTML is the past, 
>> XHTML is the future.
>
>
> I'm not saying XHTML isn't something new or something different, but 
> we aren't reinventing the wheel here. To use a rather simple analogy, 
> we're switching from the old wooden spoked wheels to air inflated 
> rubber tires, but it's still a wheel.
>
>> XHTML is designed to work in conjunction with XML-based user agents. 
>> HTML is taken from SGML and works on HTML user agents. XHTML is taken 
>> from XML with a lot of it being just like HTML.
>> HTML is old. XHTML is it's successor. Changing the root element to 
>> <xhtml> would have advantages. Even if you can't see any at the moment. 
>
>
> Like I said, unless you come up with some actual *reason* or *purpose* 
> for changing the name of the root element, it is only a novelty. If a 
> web developer needs a root element to tell him he's writing XHTML, 
> then I think he needs to go read a few more tutorials.

It would not be so the developer knows he's writing XHTML. One reason 
for changing it would be because it is XHTML and it does not make sense 
to use an <html> root element.

>
>
>> One advantage is that it would lessen confusion. People would know 
>> better if it was XHTML 2, XHTML 1.x, or HTML. And the browsers would too.
>
>
> If a web developer needs a root element to tell him he's writing 
> XHTML, then I think he needs to go read a few more tutorials.
>
> As for browsers recognizing XHTML, this is what the 
> application/xhtml+xml mime-type is for. Doing such a thing just 
> encourages bad behaviour such as that which Internet Explorer and 
> Windows in general displays quite clearly by relying on superficial 
> hints like file extensions.

That's true. But the reason for changing it is not so browsers can 
recognize it better. That is what the mime type and DOCTYPE is for.

>
>
>> It's to bad it wasn't changed in XHTML 1.0. But we can still change 
>> the future.
>> <Arthur/>
>
>
> Just because XHTML 2 will be somewhat backwards-incompatible doesn't 
> mean we have to make it even harder for people with older browsers. I 
> think you are taking something trivial and irrelevant and making a big 
> deal out of it.
>
> -Andy

If I'm taking something trivial and irrelevant and making a big deal out 
of it I must say you are also.
You can also say it like this. Since XHTML 2 is already so incompatible 
with old browsers why not make this change right away too. It would not 
really make any difference for old user agents.
<Arthur/>
Received on Wednesday, 18 June 2003 12:01:39 GMT

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