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Re: wading into the Prefix morass...

From: David Singer <singer@apple.com>
Date: Tue, 21 Feb 2012 13:29:04 -0800
Cc: Bjoern Hoehrmann <derhoermi@gmx.net>, "www-style@w3.org Style" <www-style@w3.org>
Message-id: <214EBBBF-A303-4191-BD8F-DA397D70409B@apple.com>
To: Charles Pritchard <chuck@jumis.com>

On Feb 21, 2012, at 13:19 , Charles Pritchard wrote:

> On 2/21/2012 1:12 PM, Bjoern Hoehrmann wrote:
>> Any proposal with respect to vendor prefixes has to explain how it will
>> aid standardization, development of standard features without prefixes.
>> Or it would have to explain how we are better off without standards. I
>> do not see either in your proposal.
> A shared vendor prefix, like -css-* would let authors know immediately that at least two vendors have agreed on the semantic. That's generally the bar we try to meet with standardization: are there two independent implementations?
> There's a lot of overlap with -moz- and -webkit- these days.
> I would like to see: -css-appearance, -css-transform, as a precursor to their final acceptance into the standard. And if things go really wrong, -css-x-b-transform, -css-x-c-transform, until they are right again.
> Gives them an easy way to say yes, we are using identical CSS code, no room for human error. It gives authors a way to see that it's a -css- prefix, and not an obscure -moz- or -webkit- prefix.
> Other than that, yes, standardization is great. It's just a tricky thing with CSS because you're in a real bind when implementations get CSS wrong. With scripting, there's a bit more room for error and fixes. With CSS, it's a real shame when things go wrong in the standard namespace.

I agree.  If vendors are willing to try to implement -css-whatever, then they should use a common name (that's distinguishable as being non-final).  If the implementations don't match, well, that's a matter for bug reports (against the implementations, or against the loophole in the spec. that allows for divergent understanding).

I'm not proposing vendor prefixes, or opposing them; they exist and they have a place. However, IMHO, that place does not include early implementations of multi-vendor specifications.

David Singer
Multimedia and Software Standards, Apple Inc.
Received on Tuesday, 21 February 2012 21:29:29 UTC

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