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Re: Public releases prefixes off-by-default (was RE: Unprefixing CSS properties)

From: Brad Kemper <brad.kemper@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Nov 2011 13:37:18 -0800
Message-Id: <E049A820-F74C-4064-9668-F3CFF51A8ED9@gmail.com>
Cc: "robert@ocallahan.org" <robert@ocallahan.org>, "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>, www-style <www-style@w3.org>
To: Brian Manthos <brianman@microsoft.com>
On Nov 17, 2011, at 11:23 AM, Brian Manthos <brianman@microsoft.com> wrote:

> Tab:
>>> I believe that we browsers shouldn't expose prefixed
>>> properties in our public versions.  Exposing them in betas or
>>> nightlies still lets people experiment with the features without them
>>> showing up in publicly-exposed websites or adopted as valid practices.
>>> 
>>> We've discussed this seriously within Chrome, and I believe roc likes
>>> this as well.  There are difficulties with it (convincing the release
>>> engineers to accept pushing an untested binary to beta because we
>>> switched off some prefixed features), but I think it's doable.
> 
> Rob:
>> I think it's a good idea overall. I would relax it slightly to say that
>> "browsers shouldn't expose prefixed properties in our public versions
>> *by default*." Both Firefox and Chrome routinely ship experimental stuff
>> in release builds but disabled by default, explicitly enablable by the
>> user. This reduces the risk of changing the binaries you ship, and lets
>> authors more easily access the experimental features.
> 
> 
> What's stopping Firefox and WebKit from doing this today (all prefixed properties are off-by-default in public versions)?
> 
> W3C / CSSWG policies aren't prohibiting such behavior.
> 
> If it's the right thing to do, why not flip the switch today?

An armed rebellion from Web authors if that ever happened. In spite of all the protests about prefixing, we'd all rather have that mess than to not have the features at all. Otherwise, we wouldn't bother using them until the prefix was dropped. Authors DO use the prefixed properties and values. They squawk, but use them all the same. 

Which is not to say that improvements to the process are impossible, but throwing out the baby with the bath water is not a good solution. 
Received on Thursday, 17 November 2011 21:38:09 GMT

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