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RE: Possible Compromise solution for namespaces in HTML5

From: Ennals, Robert <robert.ennals@intel.com>
Date: Sat, 21 Nov 2009 02:51:06 +0000
To: Tab Atkins Jr. <jackalmage@gmail.com>
CC: "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>, "Carr, Wayne" <wayne.carr@intel.com>, "Tran, Dzung D" <dzung.d.tran@intel.com>
Message-ID: <EB332302649177439359CE520D92A0AF9F5F6EEF@irsmsx503.ger.corp.intel.com>
Are you referring to the problem where random company X creates an extension which has a big flaw, that extension gets widely adopted, and then we are forced to accept a broken feature into the standard since we can't change it without breaking stuff?

I think there are several ways that my proposal reduces this problem:

* You can't stick stuff in the default namespace without W3C permission. E.g. if you want to create "blink" then you have to make it "x-sillyspec:blink".

* If you want to get a "blessed" prefix like "sillyspec" then you need to submit a spec, and go through some kind of modest review process before getting assigned your prefix. If your spec is obviously broken then this would hopefully come up in the brief review period and get fixed.

* If your new features eventually get folded into HTML6, then they have a different name. You started with "x-sillyspec:blink", then it got tidied up a bit, and you had "sillyspec:blink", then, after much deep thought in the W3C, it turned into "blink". Each of these is textually distinguished and so they can be defined by different specs, and work in different ways, without breaking backwards compatibility.


I think that the reality on the ground is that people are going to independently extend HTML5, without going through this working group, irrespective of whether we tell them that they should. I think the real issue is whether we are able to give people a way to extend HTML5 in a way that minimizes the chance that they will break stuff when they do. 

-Rob


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tab Atkins Jr. [mailto:jackalmage@gmail.com]
> Sent: Friday, November 20, 2009 2:52 PM
> To: Ennals, Robert
> Cc: public-html@w3.org; Carr, Wayne; Tran, Dzung D
> Subject: Re: Possible Compromise solution for namespaces in HTML5
> 
> No comments on the proposal as a whole, but this bit:
> 
> On Fri, Nov 20, 2009 at 4:33 PM, Ennals, Robert
> <robert.ennals@intel.com> wrote:
> > * It allows independent parties to develop useful extensions without
> the W3C having to act as a choke point to approve stuff
> 
> …isn't true.  It's been discussed before how namespace-based extension
> of element names is *not* very friendly to the standardization
> process.  Making namespaces workable in HTML may bring significant
> compat benefits, but it won't really help with the extensibility
> problem.
> 
> Now, back to discussing the proposal as a whole. ^_^
> 
> ~TJ
Received on Saturday, 21 November 2009 02:51:45 UTC

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