W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > February 2008

Fw: Validation error frequencies

From: Ben 'Cerbera' Millard <cerbera@projectcerbera.com>
Date: Wed, 6 Feb 2008 13:44:40 -0000
Message-ID: <005401c868c6$6e45a350$0301a8c0@ben9xr3up2lv7v>
To: "HTMLWG" <public-html@w3.org>, "Philip Taylor \(Webmaster\)" <P.Taylor@Rhul.Ac.Uk>

(I forgot to send this to HTMLWG.)

Philip Taylor (Webmaster) wrote:
> In general, I'm completely opposed to this philosophy
> of "let's make standard (or 'conforming') what the
> real world already does", since to my mind it is
> tantamount to letting the horse decide where to
> deliver the milk, but let's put that to one side
> for now :

HTML5 validators need not be blunt instruments to hit people round the head
with until they put every byte where we want it. HTML5 validators can be
friendly and helpful things to let people know when they do unreliable
things and provide pointers to the reliable ways.

If a thing is reliable, the validator should not pester people about it,
imho. The authoring chapter/document of HTML5 can give advice about which of
the reliable things are best suited to specific situations.

Philip Taylor (Webmaster wrote:
> I hadn't even realised that HTML 5 sought to deprecate
> "cellspacing" and "cellpadding". Given that both are
> perfectly acceptable in HTML 4.01 Strict, what was/is
> the justification (if any) for removing them from the
> draft specification for HTML 5 ?

They are also in from HTML 3.2:


At that time, CSS was not around. Presentational attributes were necessary
and useful.

HTML4 Strict makes absent many presentational features, such as <img border>
and <font face>, in favour of style sheets. I guess the presence of
cellspacing and cellpadding are bugs.

Philip Taylor (Webmaster) wrote:
> Unless it can be unequivocally demonstrated that they are a Bad Thing 
> [tm], I believe they should be retained, and that no arbitrary 
> constraint(s) should be placed on the range of possible values of each.

My understanding is that HTML5 begins with a clean slate and adds features 
as found necessary through studies, surveys and so on.

It may be that presentational attributes on tables have not yet been studied 
thoroughly enough, had spec text drafted, reviewed and added into the spec. 
As is the case with table accessibility attributes.

Ben 'Cerbera' Millard
Collections of Interesting Data Tables
Received on Wednesday, 6 February 2008 13:45:55 UTC

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