W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > January 2003

Re: XBL is (mostly) W3C redundant, and CSS is wrong W3C layer for semantic behavior *markup*

From: Shelby Moore <shelby@coolpage.com>
Date: Wed, 01 Jan 2003 20:07:00 -0600
Message-Id: <4.1.20030101194807.0386da80(null)>
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: www-style@w3.org

At 01:10 AM 1/2/2003 +0000, Ian Hickson wrote::
>>>> ------------------
>>>> The way a semantic markup element is bound to the implementation
>>>> which defines it's semantics.
>>> Could you give a definition of "non-semantic binding" first?
>> Any _mechanism_ of binding which does not define (create, change, augment,
>> subclass, etc) semantics.
>So would you agree with the following definitions?
>   Semantics
>      The intrinsic meaning of an element.

Yes, but it depends on the interpretation of "intrinsic".

"Of or relating to the essential nature of a thing;"

For example, a paragraph is semantically a collection of sentences...

>   Defining of semantics
>      The act by which the intrinsic meaning of an element is created,
>      changed, augmented, or subclassed.

I'd prefer "mechanism" than "act" because it could be inferred and not
created by any action.

>   Binding
>      A mechanism which associates an element with something.

Agreed except it could be more general than "element".  I just say "A
mechanism of association".

>   Non-semantic binding
>      A mechanism of binding that does not define semantics.


>   Semantic binding
>      The way a semantic markup element is bound to the implementation
>      which defines its semantics.

Prefer to just say the opposite of non-semantic binding, i.e. "A mechanism
of binding that _does_ define semantics."

>If so, could you also define the word "implementation" as used in the last
>of these definitions?

I'd prefer to eliminate "implementation", since that is "what is bound" and
really doesn't have any impact on whether it is semantic binding or not.
Although it is true you could semantically bind "something" which does not
alter semantics, it is still defines by reaffirmation or
non-transformation.  Afaics, you are correct to more abstractly write

>It would also be helpful if you could suggest what the "something" in the
>definition of "binding" is.

I think if we do that them we will get into debate about implementation

I think the key point is the mechanism and whether it is at orthogonal
layer to non-semantic binding.

>I think we are making good progress here.

Seems like we are getting a better understanding of each other's views.  I
hope I understand your side that the ability to make DOM extensions, have
behaviors be interactive, etc are important features of XBL.  I am not
against XEvents, future possible way for CSS selection of event bindings,
etc.  I am just trying to get the semantic mechanism out of the style
layer.  It is okay for me if other people disagree, as long as they
understand my point.

Also this is a good time for me to say to Daniel (I kept forgetting to
mention) that the idea of XBL and XUL, which is to create extensible
semantics and swappable behavior is an excellent one that I respect.  Else
I wouldn't be here.  I did not create that idea.  I got the idea from
Mozilla (the work of Daniel and others) as well as my experience in using
the Microsoft WebBrowser control for plugin GUI in Cool Page.

-Shelby Moore
Received on Wednesday, 1 January 2003 21:06:20 UTC

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