[Bug 5744] Improved Fragment Identifiers


--- Comment #7 from Erik Wilde <dret@berkeley.edu>  2008-06-14 15:38:26 ---
(In reply to comment #5)
> It's relatively easy to show that a feature is necessary -- provide evidence
> that people are working around the lack of the feature. If they're not, then
> the feature probably isn't necessary. This isn't really that much of a
> judgement call -- it's usually pretty clear when a feature is missing or not.

i think you are applying the wrong logic here. for pure authoring purposes,
looking at whether widgets or libraries have been created works well, because
these will be loaded dynamically with a page and authors can do a lot by
developing these workarounds.

for the thing i am talking about, two things are different:

* the person trying to create a link to a fragment of HTML does not have write
access to the document, so there is no possibility to go the usual route of
developing workarounds as widgets/libraries.

* even if there is a local workaround (like the extension supporting xpointer),
it only makes sense if this is installed (!) on both sides, the usual dynamic
loading of scripting does not work here.

so i think that before saying that the lack of widgets/libraries is a proof
that the proposed extension is not necessary, it is important to realize that
this approach simply does not work for this particular problem. so using this
kind of "check" to decide whether a feature is necessary in this case may not
be the best foundation for a decision.

fragment identifiers are a very typical chicken-and-egg problem. why create
them when the other side cannot understand them? why implement them when nobody
understands them? thus, creating better fragment identification would be a
explicit decision to try to improve the hypermedia capabilities of the web,
allowing people to better link to things. the web's hypermedia capabilities
often have not been at the core of web development ("why link when you can
search?"), but i think HTML is important enough (after all, the "H" stands for
hypertext) to at least consider a modest proposal to enable better hyperlinking
on the web, rather than dismiss it out of general principle.

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Received on Saturday, 14 June 2008 15:39:01 UTC