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Tantek responds: Can Browsers Attempt to Render Broken XHTML?

From: Joe Clark <joeclark@joeclark.org>
Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2003 21:00:15 -0400
Message-Id: <a05200f20bb2142b09039@[]>
To: WAI-IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

The original message was:

>  > From: Kynn Bartlett <[17]kynn@idyllmtn.com>
>  > Subject: Can Browsers Attempt to Render Broken XHTML?
>  >
>  >>> Where's the requirement that SGML-based HTML should not display an
>>>>  invalid Strict document?
>>>  You're right, there is no MUST NOT clause in the Conforming User
>>>  Agents section of the HTML 4.01 spec.[1]
>>>  Nor is there one in the XHTML 1 spec.[2] In fact, they're pretty much
>>>  identical in terms of recovering from elements and attributes they
>>>  don't understand. The XHTML spec says that it has to parse the
>  >> document as XML, but doesn't say thou shalt not render if it fails.

Tantek Çelik <http://tantek.com/log/> graciously authorizes me to 
pass on his response:

>This is much ado about nothing. Or at least a lot more noise than signal.
>If a document is sent as text/html, no matter whether the insides 
>look like, XHTML or not (e.g. XHTML1.0 document written to the 
>Appendix C compatibility guidelines), the browser can be quite 
>reasonably expected to render broken content.
>If a document is sent as text/xml or application/xml or 
>application/xhtml+xml, then the browser can be expected to NOT 
>"pretend as if it has a structured document" when it sees broken 
>Of course most modern operating systems permit the user to change 
>the type of a document file on their machine, thus it is reasonable 
>for a browser to give that option to the user for documents received 
>over the web as well. E.g. a browser could take a broken XML or 
>XHTML document, and provide the user the option to change the type 
>of the document to text/html and try again. I don't see anything in 
>any W3C spec that would prevent a UA from having this kind of user 


     Joe Clark | joeclark@joeclark.org
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Received on Thursday, 26 June 2003 21:00:35 UTC

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