W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > January 2004

Re: More language tags would solve a lot of annoyances

From: Ernest Cline <ernestcline@mindspring.com>
Date: Mon, 19 Jan 2004 22:40:59 -0500
Message-ID: <410-22004122034059812@mindspring.com>
To: "Bjoern Hoehrmann" <derhoermi@gmx.net>, "David Woolley" <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
Cc: www-html@w3.org

> [Original Message]
> From: Bjoern Hoehrmann <derhoermi@gmx.net>
> To: David Woolley <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
> Cc: <www-html@w3.org>
> Date: 1/19/2004 9:09:26 PM
> Subject: Re: More language tags would solve a lot of annoyances
> * David Woolley wrote:
> >>>(Valid HTML 2 documents (which don't need <!DOCTYPE....) can start with
> >>><TITLE>; this can also be the first tag after the <!DOCTYPE directive
> >>>for HTML 4.01 documents.)
> >>
> >> I don't know what a "Valid HTML 2 document" is, but documents
> >> to RFC 1866 (HTML 2.0) must start with a document type declaration.
> >
> >Quoting said document:
> >
> >      NOTE - If the body of a `text/html' message entity does not begin
> >      with a document type declaration, an HTML user agent should infer
> >      the above document type declaration.
> >
> >This is what makes documents without a DOCTYPE HTML 2.0.
> My point is that if it does not have a document type declaration, it
> ain't HTML 2.0 and is thus most likely not "Valid HTML 2.0" as opposed
> to your claim.

The confusion here is due to two separate statements.  In the same
 section as that NOTE that David quotes, there is this requirement:

   To identify information as an HTML document conforming to this
   specification, each document must start with one of the following
   document type declarations.

In short,  in order to be HTML 2.0 it must start with one of the
HTML2.0 <!DOCTYPE>s, but as of the writing of RFC 1866,
user agents were encouraged to treat text/html without a
<!DOCTYPE> as if it were HTML 2.0 Level 2.  I don't know of
any user agent that ever did do that tho, as most had at least
one element or attribute they supported that wasn't in HTML2.0 Level 2.
Received on Monday, 19 January 2004 22:41:06 UTC

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