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Re: XHTML 1.0 Content-Negotiation

From: Bjoern Hoehrmann <derhoermi@gmx.net>
Date: Sun, 07 Aug 2005 00:17:32 +0200
To: "James Pickering" <jp29@cox.net>
Cc: <www-qa@w3.org>
Message-ID: <42f53505.398265@smtp.bjoern.hoehrmann.de>

* James Pickering wrote:
>I do beg a question: why do the W3C staff writers employ XHTML 1.0 (mostly 
>Strict) served as content type text/html when the W3C recommended practice 
>is to serve it as  application/xhtml+xml ? Even the W3C page 
>http://www.w3.org/2003/01/xhtml-mimetype/content-negotiation is served this 
>way.

I can't answer for the W3C (you might consider asking on the publicly
archived site-comments@w3.org mailing list) but the XHTML media type
is known to be problematic, depending on the browser version entity
references like &ouml; might not work, scripting might not work, some
browsers won't render the document progressively (so you might have to
wait until the entire document is downloaded from the server before
you can read or do something with it, which might take quite some time
for typical W3C documents).

Since many user agents do not support XHTML steps must be taken to
deliver a different document (or the same document with a different
type) to those user agents which involves possibly non-trivial
processing on the server (e.g., you need to detect whether the document
is XHTML first) and might have negative impact on intermediaries like
caching proxy servers. Considering that users of  the documents don't
really gain anything from that at the moment, there is not really a
point in doing that.
-- 
Björn Höhrmann · mailto:bjoern@hoehrmann.de · http://bjoern.hoehrmann.de
Weinh. Str. 22 · Telefon: +49(0)621/4309674 · http://www.bjoernsworld.de
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Received on Saturday, 6 August 2005 22:17:46 GMT

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