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Re: [VE][338] Add Subject Here

From: Jukka K. Korpela <jkorpela@cs.tut.fi>
Date: Mon, 12 Jan 2015 12:01:29 +0200
Message-ID: <54B39B79.7060007@cs.tut.fi>
To: www-validator@w3.org
2015-01-11, 13:33, WHP.Metselaar@planet.nl ẃrote:

> Validating http://www.flyingred.nl/FRgames_programma.php
> Error [338]: "cannot generate system identifier for general entity X"
> LS
> In general the validator should not check any content in a href
> parameter after the ? within a php-script.

No, by definition it *must* treat the href attribute value according to 
general HTML principles, when performing XHTML 1.0 or XHTML 1.1 
validation. In XHTML 1.0 and XHTML 1.1, the href attribute is declared 
with CDATA content, so a validator must treat it as an arbitraty string, 
checking only generic XML attribute syntax. This means that it must not 
contain any “&” character except as part of a character reference or an 
entity reference.

Note that your DOCTYPE is in error, as the validator describes: “This 
document uses an inconsistent DOCTYPE declaration. The System Identifier 
http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd declares the 
XHTML 1.0 Transitional document type, but the associated Public 
Identifier -//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.1 Transitional//EN does not match this 
document type.”

There is no XHTML 1.1 Transitional. The validator’s initial message 
“Errors found while checking this document as -//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.1 
Transitional//EN!” is misleading. It echoes the Public Identifier in the 
DOCTYPE, even though it has ignored it and used the URL instead.

> Often these parameters are provided by an external party or provided by
> the designer.

That’s irrelevant to what a validator must do, by definition.

By XHTML rules, the only solution is to replace any occurrence of “&” in 
those attributes by “&amp;” (or by an equivalent character reference). 
These rules also apply in XHTML linearization of HTML5.

> Out of 111 errors and 47 warnings in  script
> http://www.flyingred.nl/FRgames_programma.php
> at least 50% of remarks were related to the above mentioned cause.
> This makes is very confusing to analyze and correct ones source and does
> not encourage the upgrade to HTML5

If you intend to “upgrade to HTML5”, you have a long way to go and 
probably nothing to achieve. Consider using HTML5 if you ever *rewrite* 
the page. Editing pages to change their syntax from, say, an attempt at 
using XHTML 1.0 or XHTML 1.1 to either flavor (HTML or XHTML) of HTML5 
is really an exercise in futility.

But if you are going to do that, my practical advice is to change the 
DOCTYPE to <!DOCTYPE html> and to use
which has a nice message filtering feature. You can selectively silence 
some messages, including the messages about “&” (which are rather 
irrelevant and formal) and messages about “obsolete” features, focusing 
on problems that may really matter (like nested <a> elements, wrong 
<table> structures, etc.). You can then deal with things like the “&” 
issue later, or simply decide to ignore it.

Received on Monday, 12 January 2015 10:01:59 UTC

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