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RE: [becss] "Behavioral Extensions to CSS" no longer an appropriate name

From: Chris Wilson <Chris.Wilson@microsoft.com>
Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2007 16:31:03 -0700
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
CC: "Paul Nelson (ATC)" <paulnel@winse.microsoft.com>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <0B0F5B61B85C2847852ED3B251F89F6FEFEEDFF06E@NA-EXMSG-W601.wingroup.windeploy.ntdev.microsoft.com>

Ian Hickson [mailto:ian@hixie.ch] wrote:
>On Mon, 22 Oct 2007, Chris Wilson wrote:
>>
>> If this spec is called "Behavioral Extensions to CSS," it begs the
>> questions of "what's the relationship of this and Microsoft's behaviors,
>> heavily used and supported in 80% of the web browsers currently in use?
>
>It supplants them.

Um, as in "to replace (one thing) by something else" [1]?  No it doesn't, because it doesn't work in IE <= 7 at the very least, and 'behavior' does; and I'm unaware of any commitment by Microsoft to remove 'behavior' and implement 'binding' for the same purposes.  In spirit, I can see how this is intended to supplant 'behavior' - but please don't reuse the same specification for something that is beyond substantial different (and borders on totally different).  That seems revisionist to me.

>> Why isn't this just the 'behavior' property that Microsoft implemented
>> nearly a decade ago, since it seems to do the same thing?"
>
>Because it is instead the 'binding' property that Mozilla implemented
>nearly a decade ago, which also seems to do the same thing, but happens to
>have a few advantages (e.g. its vendor wrote a more detailed spec).

Mmm-hmm.  Had anyone expressed interest in implementing, or indeed even given feedback about BECSS, we would have written a more detailed spec as well.  As it is, the original BECSS is roughly twice as long as this new draft?

Again, my main point of feedback was simply to change the name of the spec.  I personally think 'binding' is a lame name - as Daniel said, " Call that binding and the public will not understand it ; call it behaviours and they will understand it."  (Of course, you'd have to deal with that 'u' problem.)  I think calling the property something different than the specification, particularly when the specification name is already in use, is a mistake.  That can of course be resolved in more than one way.

>> The original document was far more than just a first WG - Microsoft
>> implemented a feature called CSS Behaviors, and it's in fairly heavy use
>> today (for VML, SMIL applied to HTML, and a bunch of custom controls as
>> well).
>
>I don't think we really should count features that are used by the UA
>itself to implement other features as "heavy use".

You've heard of a product called Microsoft Office, I presume?

>> I'm just saying "behavior" is a loaded word, and we should either be
>> making this CSS feature either really inherit spiritually from the
>> previous one
>
>It does. BECSS and HTCs (Microsoft's behaviours) and Action Sheets (also
>in the original BECSS draft) inspired Mozilla's XBL, which was the base
>for sXBL, which is where XBL2 came from, which is what the new BECSS draft
>is primarily based around today.

That's not a strong enough reasoning to reuse precisely the same name.  Imagine if Netscape Navigator still had 80% market share today, and I proposed a "Layer" element in HTML5.  I am merely trying to avoid confusion.

-Chris

[1] http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/supplant
Received on Monday, 22 October 2007 23:32:25 GMT

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