[whatwg] Absent rev?

Ian Hickson wrote:
> On Tue, 18 Nov 2008, Martin McEvoy wrote:
>> Just one small question
>> Why Has HTML5 dropped the rev=""[1] attribute?
>> [1] http://www.w3.org/TR/html5-diff/#absent-attributes
> We did some studies and found that the attribute was almost never used, 
> and most of the time, when it was used, it was a typo where someone meant 
> to write rel="" but wrote rev="". To be precise, the most commonly used 
> value was rev="made", which is equivalent to rel="author" and thus was not 
> a convincing use case. The second most common value was rev="stylesheet", 
> which is meaningless and obviously meant to be rel="stylesheet". We 
> therefore determined that authors would benefit more from the validator 
> complaining about this attribute instead of supporting it.

(I don't dispute it's relative un-used-ness...)

> Anything that could be done with rev="" can be done with rel="" with an 
> opposite keyword, so this omission should be easy to handle.

This would seem to shift work from HTML5 to relationship vocabulary 
specs, whether RDFa-oriented or XFN-based: they'll have to name the 
relationship in both directions now.

  <p>See my <a rel="father" href="pa.html">dad's page</a> for details</p>

<p>See my <a rel="child" href="john.html">son's page</a> for details</p>

are ok in html5, but

pa.html: <p>Reader,<a rev="father" href="john.html">i'm his father</a></p>

So long as there's a plausible inverse defined,

...isn't. I'm not arguing here that this is right or wrong or good or 
bad or pretty or ugly, just that the parties defining little 
relationship vocabularies such as 'parent', 'child', 
'father','mother','brother','ex-line-manager', and so on will (now 'rev' 
is going away) need to think carefully about naming each inverse 
relationship as well. As you point out, rev= wasn't heavily used anyway; 
however technologies like microformats and RDFa are relatively new to 
the Web, and things can take a while to get adopted (eg. XHR/'ajax').



a personal ps.:
for some reason, rev= always made my head hurt slightly to even think 
about,  I guess because there are two senses of a reversed link: the 
reversed meaning of a link versus the idea of an incoming link / 
backlink, and the difference is simultaneously both obvious and subtle

Received on Tuesday, 18 November 2008 02:42:23 UTC