W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-svg@w3.org > November 2004

Re: Reconsider SVG 1.2

From: Jon Ferraiolo <jon.ferraiolo@adobe.com>
Date: Wed, 17 Nov 2004 20:11:49 -0800
To: "Robert O'Callahan" <robert@ocallahan.org>, www-svg@w3.org
Message-id: <>

At 08:58 AM 11/17/2004, Robert O'Callahan wrote:

>Jon Ferraiolo wrote:
>>My personal opinion is that:
>>1) It was a mistake for SVG 1.0 (with the emphasis on "1.0") to support 
>>CSS at all, even on an optional basis. Virtually no real-life SVG content 
>>uses CSS today. (As you point out, CSS is an optional feature in SVG, and 
>>the Tiny profile does not allow it at all.)
>>2) However, we should leave CSS support in SVG, at least for now (i.e., 
>>SVG 1.2), because it might prove advantageous to the W3C within its 
>>Compound Document (CDWG) activity (just recently started). One of the 
>>goals of the Compound Document activity is to allow intermixing of 
>>different presentation namespaces within the same file (XHTML, SVG, 
>>XForms to name three) and to define the detailed processing model when 
>>this occurs. Since CSS is a necessity if you want to define the 
>>presentation of XHTML, therefore it is critical to define what happens to 
>>the SVG elements in the presence of CSS. It might help that the SVG 
>>working group already figured out how the cascade works in SVG and which 
>>properties from CSS apply to SVG elements.
>Developing a set of specifications independently, freezing them, and then 
>handing them off to the CDWG to figure out how to make them work together 
>without breaking anything seems like a rather tall order for the CDWG. But 
>I guess we're stuck with it.
>Given that, and the fact that most SVG authors and implementors seem to 
>prefer to live in an SVG-only world and are unhappy about making 
>compromises to play well with other worlds, perhaps SVG 1.2 should proceed 
>with an attached proviso that it is not suitable for mixed documents and a 
>promise that a different, and incompatible, SVG variant will be developed 
>(by the CDWG, perhaps) for use in mixed documents.

I wouldn't be so pessimistic! Adobe has 18 months of experience with mixing 
XHTML, SVG and CSS (and XBL) together in the same document and we see 
reason for optimism that it will be possible for the CDWG to define how 
things integrate within the same document without having to define special 
variants of the languages. Our analysis is that most of the integration 
rules will be glaringly obvious (e.g., one DOM, one scripting context, one 
CSS styling context, events bubble across namespace boundaries, etc), and 
that the primary task for the CDWG will be to document all of these 
glaringly obvious things and then work through a handful of integration 
issues which will require more discussion. If any "variants" are necessary, 
based on watching the W3C process for a number of years, my guess is that 
CDWG will first produce recommendations that require no variants, but might 
later produce recommendations that require minor some changes in various 
languages, not just SVG, in order to consolidate things in a more coherent 
manner. For example, perhaps all of the <style>, <script>, and <a> elements 
might be unified to be exactly the same.


>Robert O'Callahan <robert@ocallahan.org>
>"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word
>was God. ... The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We
>have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the
>Father, full of grace and truth." 1 John 1:1,14
Received on Thursday, 18 November 2004 05:18:26 UTC

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