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RE: standard out of the box (was: IE Blog: Internet Explorer 8 and Acid2: A Milestone)

From: Paul Nelson (ATC) <paulnel@winse.microsoft.com>
Date: Thu, 20 Dec 2007 14:51:36 -0800
To: John Oyler <johnoyler.css@gmail.com>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <D92F7E6A79E88B4684BFC067AE15477D01079C04@NA-EXMSG-S702.segroup.winse.corp.microsoft.com>

If large users don't rapidly convert their content because it would cost them millions of Dollars or Euros and a large amount of time, a measured approach to migration is the best course to take. My guess is that because a number of large organizations are involved in the W3C they are moving eventually.

My response to your initial mail is to inject reality into the discussion. Having a measured migration path (e.g. using DOCTYPE) and not just breaking people will engender better feelings from those who don't want their work to suddenly break. We found this out with IE7 changes. It is painful.

I would argue that defaulting a page that has no DOCTYPE to be standards compliant may not be the best option. There are many legacy pages out there that would break. If a person sets the DOCTYPE then that should be honored...and may still break some pages.

It would be really great if we can collectively come up with a solution that is workable for the millions of people that use the web and not just flame or trash each other. Who cares if the user has Opera, Mozilla, Safari or even IE? Can we create a way that web authors can count on to take them to the future of interoperability?



Paul


-----Original Message-----
From: John Oyler [mailto:johnoyler.css@gmail.com]
Sent: Friday, December 21, 2007 6:28 AM
To: www-style@w3.org
Cc: Paul Nelson (ATC)
Subject: Re: standard out of the box (was: IE Blog: Internet Explorer 8 and Acid2: A Milestone)


On Dec 20, 2007, at 4:41 PM, Paul Nelson (ATC) wrote:

>
>> So please, do the world a favor... break backward compatibility!!!
>
> I listed to a Chevron representative at the W3C Plenary who stood up
> and said, "We have over 100,000 users using systems based on the
> web. Please don't break backward compatibility." It is easy to say
> to break backward compatibility. However, the reality is that there
> are a number of large organizations who, like Chevron, are not
> willing to (or maybe can't afford to is better said) use the
> browsers that are not concerned about backward compatibility.
>
> Not quite as easy as you say.

Then what is to be done? If there is no possible way to wean these
users off of it, and going cold turkey isn't an option either, we
might as well shut down this mailing list and the W3C itself. The only
other option is for Mozilla or someone else to finally, after many
years of pain, take away most or all of Microsoft's marketshare. Is
that what your employer wants?

Personally, I'm ok with a new doctype, when the time comes. Seems like
we'll need one with html5 anyway. And it will get rolled into the
other browsers quickly enough, that as long as IE has it also, it'll
be no big deal.


John Oyler
john@discrevolt.com
Received on Thursday, 20 December 2007 22:49:56 GMT

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