W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > March 2009

Re: View Source

From: Jeff Schiller <codedread@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 18 Mar 2009 18:15:28 -0500
Message-ID: <da131fde0903181615s2f80f8f3yf23ffc210cb3b94@mail.gmail.com>
To: Robin Berjon <robin@berjon.com>
Cc: "G. Wade Johnson" <gwadej@anomaly.org>, www-svg WG <www-svg@w3.org>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
I should preface everything by stating that I'm definitely IN FAVOUR
of an SVG serialization within HTML5.  My only concerns are related to
the tool stack, but Robin has assured me that tool vendors will gladly
update their tools because HTML5 parsing and error recovery is so
simple.  That being said:

On 3/18/09, Robin Berjon <robin@berjon.com> wrote:
> There are vastly more HTML documents, more HTML developers, more HTML
> tools, more HTML implementations, etc. than there are for SVG. Adapting SVG
> so that it works and is well-understood and well-perceived in an HTML
> environment is simply a way of giving it a chance of seeing the widespread
> adoption that it has not greatly enjoyed in the past decade  a goal with
> which I believe you agree.
>  Allow me to put it another way. Would you rather 1) SVG be *sometimes*
> produced in a tag-soupish way and see massive adoption; or 2) stay strictly
> XML and stagnate at the adoption level it has today (which means it'll phase
> out, notably from handsets)?

The way you have phrased this as a simple two option choice, it seems
you believe that SVG's XML syntax is the only thing holding SVG
adoption back.  I think a far greater factor is that it is still not
natively supported on the MAJORITY of deployed browsers.  A large
enough slice of SVGF 1.1 spec has been only recently supported by less
than 20% of deployed browsers.  Until a majority of deployed browsers
support it, I don't think SVG will EVER reach 'massive adoption' on
the scale of HTML.

Are you supposing that Microsoft will only support SVG-in-HTML if it's
not XML-based because they have a bias against "XML the technology"?
Hard to believe this when Silverlight's declarative component is
itself an XML dialect.

It's also interesting that many other "RIA" technologies out there are
XML-based (Flex / MXML, OpenLaszlo XUL).

So where is the evidence that HTML-izing the syntax WITHOUT adoption
by the majority of deployed browsers is the 'silver bullet' to mass
adoption?  Actually I consider "mass adoption" largely the effect of
the majority of browsers supporting a technology.

>  So yes, if we reach an agreement on SVG in HTML and it ships (as it's
> looking to do), then I would sure be disappointed that Inkscape didn't go to
> the effort of including an HTML parsing library to read in SVG content,
> considering that it would be a tiny cost compared to the increased usage of
> SVG in general, and probably of Inkscape in particular. Nothing flippant
> about that, just a common do-what-your-users-want implementation strategy.

I can accept that SVG-in-HTML will happen, and I think it will be
largely a Good Thing for SVG (when a large percentage of the existing
SVG ecosystem updates to support the new serialization).  However,
claiming that it is the main reason that SVG hasn't experienced
widespread adoption on the HTML scale is just ignoring the Microsoft
factor (sorry, it had to be said).

Received on Wednesday, 18 March 2009 23:16:09 UTC

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