W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-validator@w3.org > October 2006

Re: validating XML made more difficult than necessary

From: Martin Duerst <duerst@it.aoyama.ac.jp>
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2006 16:48:03 +0900
Message-Id: <>
To: olivier Thereaux <ot@w3.org>
Cc: www-validator@w3.org

At 14:54 06/10/05, olivier Thereaux wrote:
>Hello Martin,
>On Oct 3, 2006, at 10:46 , Martin Duerst wrote:

>When using file upload, there is no way for the validator to display  
>a form with the file to upload already specified.
>I suppose what we could do is to provide the user with a new form to  
>"upload another file" or "upload the file again".

Yes, that's a nice idea.

>* As a result, for document types which are not known in its catalog,  
>it chooses SGML mode by default. That's a problem


>> - A document starting with "<?xml" can easily be guessed to be XML  
>> rather than SGML.
>I guess, although I'm sure the usual suspects on this list will  
>happily prove you wrong with some fun corner case.

Once you get the bulk of the cases to work as everybody would
expect it, you can always add an overwrite for such an edge case
if anybody cares. But even if technically possible, anybody who
wants to validate a document starting with <?xml with an SGML
declaration that does not correspond exactly to XML (at which
point we are back to validating with XML :-) is just a danger
to him/herself.

>> - In this day and age of XML, making SGML the default seems terribly
>>   outdated, even more so because XML is W3C's own technology.
>Yes, and no. The current web, and thus the market for this validator,  
>is still mostly using HTML <= 4.01, as far as I can tell. The current  
>web hardly uses anything but text/html, and the HTML working group so  
>far has been saying "don't treat it as XML". So unfortunately making  
>XML the default does not seem to be in sync with the state of what  
>we're dealing with.

I'm not saying you have to make it the default for validating HTML.
I'm just asking to make it the default for documents that start
with <?xml. If you don't do that, you'll be telling people things
such as that the slash in <br /> in their document is wrong,
which for XHTML would be extremely confusing and damaging.

Regards,     Martin.

#-#-#  Martin J. Du"rst, Assoc. Professor, Aoyama Gakuin University
#-#-#  http://www.sw.it.aoyama.ac.jp       mailto:duerst@it.aoyama.ac.jp     
Received on Tuesday, 10 October 2006 07:53:27 UTC

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