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Re: several messages about New Vocabularies in text/html

From: Bruce Miller <bruce.miller@nist.gov>
Date: Thu, 03 Apr 2008 11:44:02 -0400
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: David Carlisle <davidc@nag.co.uk>, Sam Ruby <rubys@us.ibm.com>, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>, Simon Pieters <simonp@opera.com>, Neil Soiffer <Neils@dessci.com>, jg307@cam.ac.uk, public-html@w3.org, www-math@w3.org, Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de>
Message-id: <47F4FB42.5030207@nist.gov>

Ian Hickson wrote:
> I did some research on actual usage of MathML on the Web.
> 
> I scanned about 7 billion pages, and in each page, after parsing it with 
> an HTML5 parser, looked for elements that,
...
> This suggests that Content MathML use is nowhere near as frequently used 
> as has been previously suggested.

I know you're motivated by the un-conscientious authors,
but given the state of the web, conscientious authors
are only serving MathML in xhtml pages.
So, I assume you're processing xhtml pages?

But more than that, some sites are set up to
only serve mathml to clients known to be able to
handle it (firefox, IE+MathPlayer, amaya...
maybe there's a camino out there?).
I've set mine up that way, but I have _no_ idea
how many sites do this.

So, you quite possibly are missing a lot of
MathML out there...
[OTOH, my site is not (yet) offering content mathml]


> On Wed, 2 Apr 2008, Bruce Miller wrote:
>> _Surely_, no one out there is writing HTML using <whatevertag/> when 
>> they _dont_ mean to close the element?!?!?! (rolling my eyes :> )
> 
> Yeah, it's used all over the place actually, with the pages relying on the 
> tag not closing.

Hmm...
I'd thought we were making progress, now I'm less sure.

That Real MathML (& SVG) can be extracted from the DOM
is a very positive point for interoperability.
The other is that, along with whatever other curious
syntaxes you may care to define, that Real MathML,
or something _very_ close to it, be allowed in HTML5
is very important.

Forbidding namespace prefixes is regrettable, but
(hopefully) manageable.  Changing the rules for
(what are in XML) empty elements, seems very dangerous
and less manageable.

I can understand that my "simple" proposal for <tag/>
may not be the best one, but I hope that a way can be found
that allows the way empty elements naturally occur
in MathML (& SVG) to be processed correctly --- by
whatever means.

Hopefully, it won't boil down to an artificial list
of tags that can be closed that way; it isn't a question of
VOID elements (always empty by defn).  And also,
having such a list would seem to automatically exclude
semantics/content mathml, even ignored, without
any chance of further debate.

-- 
bruce.miller@nist.gov
http://math.nist.gov/~BMiller/
Received on Thursday, 3 April 2008 15:45:04 GMT

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