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Re: Standards mode and Quirks mode (was Re: [CSS21] Test Suite)

From: Thomas Scholz <info@scholz-webdesign.de>
Date: Sat, 31 Jul 2004 01:19:58 +0200
To: "L. David Baron" <dbaron@dbaron.org>, www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <opsby4fkwuhthev0@thomas.scholz>

Sorry, I'm late...

L. David Baron wrote:

> On Friday 2004-07-23 23:47 +0200, Thomas Scholz wrote:
>> The document type declaration is just the wrong place
>> to ask for a compatibility mode. It's markup not style, now misused for
>> layout purposes. The doctype switch is the continuation of the layout
>> table with the same methods.
> It was never designed as something that authors should select.

The document type declaration was never meant to be used for obscure  
layout decisions. If a browser misuses it, the browser should allow a  
method to be stopped.

> It was designed as a heuristic to distinguish new documents from old  
> ones.

Wrong. »New« and »old« has nothing to do with the quality of the code.  
Newer browsers even break with ISO- doctype declarations. This is really  

> Authors writing new documents should either be using XHTML MIME types or
> should be using DOCTYPE declarations that trigger standards mode.

Why? Authors should use a document type dclaration that matches the used  
syntax; that's all. If I need <menu>, I'll use
<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN">
There's nothing wrong in my code -- no need to try some »error correction«.

> After all, authors shouldn't
> need to know about standards mode and quirks mode -- they should just be
> able to follow appropriate standards.

My point is that I *am* following »appropriate standards«. But the  
browsers don't.

>> Long time ago, when Opera 7.0 implemented The Switch, I asked for a  
>> method to prevent quirks mode in all circumstences. I never got an
>> answer. A simple
>> /*--quirks:never--*/ had been enough. No luck.
> In Mozilla and Safari, you could just add an empty internal subset to
> any existing DOCTYPE declaration to turn off quirks mode.  This causes
> no semantic change to the DOCTYPE declaration.

I know. Therefore I won't do it. It's nonsense. I'll look just for  
graceful degradation in those browsers, but fixing the browser bugs is not  
*my* job.

Received on Friday, 30 July 2004 19:20:30 UTC

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