W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-forms@w3.org > January 2002

Re: Should we really care about legacy?

From: Chris Haynes <chris@harvington.org.uk>
Date: Fri, 25 Jan 2002 21:26:34 -0000
Message-ID: <004601c1a5e6$f7aac6b0$0200000a@ringo>
To: "Paul Prescod" <paul@prescod.net>, <werner.donne@re.be>
Cc: <www-forms@w3.org>
Maybe I haven't read all the XForms documentation in sufficient
but I have the mental image of XForms 'floating in a vacuum' - a
well-defined, internally-self-consistent system, but with
incompletely-defined (or non-defined?) interfaces into the reality of
today's web.

Test scenario: If the three main browser development teams announced
that they were all going to release browsers 'supporting XForms' in
six months time could I, in my role as a servlet developer, and using
only published standards, *now* develop an application which would
interact correctly with all these browsers at first release?

 (Assume, for the sake of argument, that all three teams developed
fully and accurately what has been specified - but only that).

Where would I look to understand exactly how my XHTML page had to be
structured, and what the Servlet API delivered back to me?

Could I write an XHTML page today incorporating XForms which would
pass the W3C XHTML1.0 verifier?

If not, what has to change? Who has to change it?

Would it also pass an HTML4.01 verifier? Should it?

Are all the CSS capabilities required by XForms in place in published
versions? If not, what is the committed date for release of a CSS
version defining all the required features?

How is the XML from the XForms client in the browser going to be
delivered to me through the Java Servlet API? Will I have to parse the
XML myself from a raw character stream (presumably "yes" if it is
delivered via an HTTP POST - see recent threads, and presumably the
answer for GET is undefined - again referencing recent threads).

Can I write 'dual-mode' pages which will present users with an
HTML-based form if their browser is not XForms-enabled, and XForms if
it is - without me knowing anything about the browser before I send
the page?

If not, how does the prior request tell me if its browser is
XForms-capable? Do I have to do anything special to get it to tell me?

Etc, etc, ...

Maybe I'm being unfair or ignorant, but I just have this impression
that there's still a lot of work to do to 'instantiate' the XForms
world in terms of real engineering.

I'd love to be proven wrong . . .

Chris Haynes

----- Original Message -----
From: "Paul Prescod" <paul@prescod.net>
To: <werner.donne@re.be>
Cc: <www-forms@w3.org>
Sent: Friday, January 25, 2002 5:07 PM
Subject: Re: Should we really care about legacy?

> I agree in theory, but not practically speaking. It is not the
> responsibility of W3C working groups to define standards for use
> of the web infrastructure. A third-party forms industry group could
> an XForms variant for non-Web use. It would take extra effort to
> refactor XForms at this point.
>  Paul Prescod
Received on Friday, 25 January 2002 16:30:38 UTC

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