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Re: should CSS, HTML, etc. documents bear version information? (XMLVersioning-41?)

From: Lachlan Hunt <lachlan.hunt@lachy.id.au>
Date: Sun, 01 Apr 2007 11:16:55 +1000
Message-ID: <460F0807.6090209@lachy.id.au>
To: Shane McCarron <shane@aptest.com>
CC: "Henry S. Thompson" <ht@inf.ed.ac.uk>, Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>, www-tag@w3.org

Shane McCarron wrote:
> Henry S. Thompson wrote:
>> Net-net -- languages should provide a means for specifying version 
>> information, but conformant processors should be able to override 
>> such specifications if requested/directed by consumers.
> One of the things we struggle with in the (X)HTML Working Group is 
> how to ensure that a document author (producer) can express clearly 
> which XHTML Family markup language they used when they created their 
> content.

The XHTML2 WG seems to struggle with many things.  In this case, what 
you seem to be struggling with is not only how, but *why*?

> This has "classification" ramifications (this is XHTML Basic, this is 
> XHTML + MathML) and "versioning" ramifications (this is XHTML Basic 
> 1.0, while *this* used XHTML Basic 1.1).

Such classification and versioning has yet to prove useful in any way 
whatsoever.  They have in fact proven to be actively harmful to the web 
by creating "walled gardens", particularly in the mobile market.

> Does it always matter from a validation perspective what the producer 
> intended?  No.  Not *always*.

Validation seems to be the only remotely valid argument put forth in 
favour of versioning, but its usefulness for such purposes has been, 
IMHO, successfully disputed [1].

> But it might matter.  Because it *might* matter, we must allow 
> producers the opportunity to guide agents.

Arguing for versioning because it *might* matter is a long way from 
proving it actually *does* matter.

[1] http://www.w3.org/mid/A9925841-9449-4E5C-B149-EF07E1598735@iki.fi

Lachlan Hunt
Received on Sunday, 1 April 2007 01:17:09 UTC

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