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[whatwg] Using the HTML5 DOCTYPE as a new quirksmode switch

From: Matthew Ratzloff <matt@builtfromsource.com>
Date: Sat, 10 Mar 2007 16:37:30 -0800 (PST)
Message-ID: <1823.76.104.145.55.1173573450.squirrel@webmail.builtfromsource.com>
Relying on headers is a good way to get people to ignore that part of the
specification.  Web designers don't want to worry about headers and
.htaccess files.  It has to be syntactic.

I don't understand what's wrong with DOCTYPEs, myself.

<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01//EN"
   "http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/strict.dtd">
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//WHATWG//DTD HTML 5.0//EN"
   "http://www.whatwg.org/dtd/html5/strict.dtd">
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 5.0//EN"
   "http://www.w3.org/TR/html5/strict.dtd">
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Strict//EN"
   "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-strict.dtd">

The seem to serve the purpose.  If there are two HTML 5 specifications,
browser makers can come together to decide which one to support by default
when no DOCTYPE is present.  Developers who would prefer the alternate
standard could use the appropriate DOCTYPE.

-Matt

> On Mar 10, 2007, at 8:38 AM, Mihai Sucan wrote:
>
> We're already using headers to swap between HTML and XHTML (since we
> still call both .html files).  Headers are for telling user agents
> how to deal with content.  It seems like sending a header "X-
> STANDARDS-MODE: HTML5;" (or "WHATWG-HTML5" if W3C's HTML 5 is
> significantly different) or setting an http-equiv meta tag to tell IE
> to use their super-standards mode is cleaner and more desirable as it
> doesn't bloat the spec, and should be more than enough for them.  If
> their standards mode for HTML5 has flaws and they need a NEW switch,
> it can be changed to "X-STANDARDS-MODE: HTML6;" or whatever the
> latest version of HTML is.  This can be set across an entire server
> in a few seconds via config files if needed, or set on a single
> folder via .htaccess files.  If headers are used, that also doesn't
> bloat the file if is is saved on someone's HDD.
Received on Saturday, 10 March 2007 16:37:30 UTC

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