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Re: [csswg-drafts] [css-nav-1] Improve the name of window.navigate (#3387)

From: Darien Maillet Valentine via GitHub <sysbot+gh@w3.org>
Date: Sat, 31 Jul 2021 22:29:11 +0000
To: public-css-archive@w3.org
Message-ID: <issue_comment.created-890411270-1627770550-sysbot+gh@w3.org>
I think `window.navigate()` is unshippable, the collision is major. Likewise `NavigationEvent`.

Other existing or proposed APIs have seemingly been pretty consistent about using unqualified “navigate” to refer to the [HTML definition of navigate](https://html.spec.whatwg.org/#navigate), with unqualified “navigator” referring to the agent (or ... something along those lines anyway, but it’s intelligible as “the thing that navigates” in the prior sense).

- interface [Navigator](https://html.spec.whatwg.org/multipage/system-state.html#the-navigator-object)
- interface [NavigatorManagedData](https://wicg.github.io/WebApiDevice/managed_config/#navigatormanageddata-interface)
- interface [NavigatorUAData](https://wicg.github.io/ua-client-hints/#navigatorua)
- interface [NavigationPreloadManager](https://w3c.github.io/ServiceWorker/#navigation-preload-manager)
- interface [PerformanceNavigationTiming](https://w3c.github.io/navigation-timing/#sec-PerformanceNavigationTiming)

The collision gets a lot uglier with [AppHistory](https://wicg.github.io/app-history) on the horizon:

- interface [AppHistoryNavigateEvent](https://wicg.github.io/app-history/#navigate-event-class)
- event type ["navigate"](https://wicg.github.io/app-history/#dom-apphistory-onnavigate)
- event type ["navigatesuccess"](https://wicg.github.io/app-history/#dom-apphistory-onnavigatesuccess)
- event type ["navigateerror"](https://wicg.github.io/app-history/#dom-apphistory-onnavigateerror)
- event type ["navigateto"](https://github.com/WICG/app-history#:~:text=attribute%20EventHandler%20onnavigateto)
- event type ["navigatefrom"](https://github.com/WICG/app-history#:~:text=attribute%20EventHandler%20onnavigatefrom)
- operation [navigate()](https://wicg.github.io/app-history/#dom-apphistory-navigate)

It’s not great to squat on generic terms for specific concepts. The AppHistory API is an example that avoids the “terminology manspreading” problem by using a consistent prefix for global contstructs (and the events don’t fire on window/document). I think the word “navigate”  does make sense here, but it should likely be consistently qualified as _spatial_ navigation (e.g. `SpatialNavigationEvent`).

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