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Re: HTML and XML

From: T.V Raman <raman@google.com>
Date: Wed, 11 Feb 2009 09:41:00 -0800
Message-ID: <18835.3500.199684.684447@retriever.corp.google.com>
To: mike@w3.org
Cc: elharo@metalab.unc.edu, ht@inf.ed.ac.uk, annevk@opera.com, orchard@pacificspirit.com, hsivonen@iki.fi, www-tag@w3.org

Michael, 

I repeat B.S again.

XHTML  gets served as text/html -- not  because it's full of
erros, -- but rather because IE  shows a "download this content?"
dialog if you serve  it as mime type application/xml+xhtml -- 

Michael(tm) Smith writes:
 > 
 > Elliotte Rusty Harold <elharo@metalab.unc.edu>, 2009-02-10 17:32 -0800:
 > 
 > >  On this point, I have to call B.S. again. That a document is served as 
 > >  text/html does not make it HTML. Much less does it make it not XML. If a 
 > >  document satisfies the BNF grammar and the various well-formedness 
 > >  constraints,
 > 
 > That's exactly the point. Much if not most of the XHTML content
 > being served as text/html on the Web does not satisfy XML
 > well-formedness constraints. The only reason it doesn't become
 > completely unusable in browsers is that it gets processed by HTML
 > parsers in browsers instead of by their XML parsers. If it were to
 > be served with a proper XML MIME type instead -- or if browsers
 > were to do sniffing for the XHTML doctype or namespace and
 > actually parse it as XML instead of as HTML -- it would fail to
 > remain accessible on the Web.
 > 
 > > it is XML, whatever you call it.
 > 
 > I guess some might call it broken XML.
 > 
 > > It may also be HTML, and perhaps other things as well.
 > > 
 > >  The MIME type is not normative. That someone has labeled a document as one 
 > >  thing or another does not make it that thing.
 > 
 > That may be the general case. In this specific case, serving a
 > document on the Web with the text/html MIME type makes it one very
 > definite thing: A document that will get processed as HTML
 > by browsers, not as XML.
 > 
 > It also makes it a document that should (if the producer of the
 > document wants to ensure that browsers can actually process it as
 > expected, without needing to fall back to error correction) follow
 > HTML-specific constraints.
 > 
 > That means the producers of such documents would need to follow
 > some constraints that XML tools are not able to check; for
 > example, they need to make sure they don't use self-closing tags
 > for elements that have required end tags, such as <script> or
 > <a name> instances. And they need to make sure that any <script>
 > or <style> element content follows HTML constraints, not XML/XHTML
 > constraints.
 > 
 > >  If people are serving well-formed XML, it is likely they do so because they 
 > >  find it useful to do so, whatever MIME type happens to be assigned.
 > 
 > I don't think that's necessarily likely at all. They may have just
 > copied an XHTML document from somewhere else and used it as a
 > template for their own content. Or they may be using an editor
 > that by default produces XHTML-namespaced documents with an XHTML
 > doctype. Or they may be attempting to produce XHTML (using an
 > XHTML doctype and namespace, quoting attribute values, using
 > self-closing-tag syntax on empty elements) just because they've
 > heard or been taught that's what they should be doing, without
 > having any real understanding of the supposed benefits of doing it.
 > 
 >   --Mike
 > 
 > -- 
 > Michael(tm) Smith
 > http://people.w3.org/mike/

-- 
Best Regards,
--raman

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Received on Wednesday, 11 February 2009 17:42:54 GMT

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