W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html-bugzilla@w3.org > December 2010

[Bug 11467] abbreviating navigation tag to "nav" is inconsistent with spec

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Sat, 04 Dec 2010 10:16:51 +0000
To: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
Message-Id: <E1POpAh-0002PO-UG@jessica.w3.org>

Toby Inkster <mail@tobyinkster.co.uk> changed:

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--- Comment #1 from Toby Inkster <mail@tobyinkster.co.uk> 2010-12-04 10:16:51 UTC ---
(In reply to comment #0)
> The shortening of "navigation" into the slang term "nav" seems arbitrary, since
> other tags in the html5 spec are not swapped for shorter nicknames.

Plenty of other elements have shortened names:

* <p> instead of <paragraph>
* <q> instead of <quote>
* <b> instead of <bold>
* <i> instead of <italic>
* <a> instead of <anchor>
* <th> instead of <table-header>
* <tr> instead of <table-row>
* <col> instead of <column>
* <li> instead of <list-item>
* <html> instead of <hypertext-markup-language>

and so on.

The general, but unspoken rule is that if an element is expected to be
frequently used (several times on a typical page) and would have an otherwise
unwieldy name, an abbreviation is used instead.

<navigation> is probably too long considering many pages have several
navigation sections in headers, sidebars, footers, etc. So abbreviating it to
<nav> seems right.

<header> and <footer> seem about right, as most pages will only have one of
them, and they're not especially long to begin with. <section> and <article>
could go either way, but I'd be in favour of keeping the longer version as it's
more obvious to newbies what they mean. (e.g. is <art> for artwork? is <sec> a
secure part of the page?)

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Received on Saturday, 4 December 2010 10:16:53 UTC

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