Canvas (was: Microsoft has now joined the HTML Working Group)

Hi, Maciej-

Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
> On Apr 5, 2007, at 3:40 PM, Doug Schepers wrote:
>> Surely this would be handled under the W3C Graphics Activity [1], not 
>> the HTML Activity?  
> I think new HTML elements and DOM APIs are in scope for the HTML Working 
> Group. These may include graphics capabilities, just as Graphics 
> Activity specs include hypertext capabilities.
> More specifically, the charter calls for:
> * A language evolved from HTML4 for describing the semantics of 
> documents and applications on the World Wide Web. This will be a 
> complete specification, not a delta specification.
> * Document Object Model (DOM) interfaces providing APIs for such a 
> language.
> Clearly, <canvas> would be covered by these categories and indeed is 
> used by HTML web applications today.

I don't see how your conclusion is derived from those points in the 
charter; that seems an overly broad interpretation.  The SVG WG in the 
past has been accused of scope-creep, which delayed its progress and 
publication; it's had to take pains to separate out the more 
generalizable part of the SVG Tiny 1.2 spec to the WebAPI WG.  I don't 
want HTML to get bogged down in this same mire.

'canvas' is sufficiently different to the HTML functionality and 
philosophy that I think it should be a separate specification, possibly 
as a joint Task Force between groups from both the HTML and Graphics 
Activities.  I honestly think it could move faster this way.  It's not a 
huge spec, so it could be published quickly and without being dependent 
upon the entirety of the HTML spec.

Notable differences are:
* no DOM
* no semantic richness
* unable to be styled via CSS (or the like)
* an idiosyncratic API unlike anything in HTML

It's really a black box.  I also don't see why its use should be 
restricted to HTML... it could be used in SVG or WebCGM, too.

Obviously, this decision is not up to me, but if Apple chooses to make 
this royalty-free, I think it should be for all W3C technologies, not 
just HTML.


Research and Standards Engineer
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Received on Friday, 6 April 2007 17:59:12 UTC