Re: State and Status of WAI-ARIA approach to host-language embedding

On Thu, 17 Apr 2008 15:33:57 +0200, Henry S. Thompson <>  
> More generally, it appeared to me that if a bit more effort were
> expended, the cost of the :-based approach could be reduced, thus
> perhaps shifting the outcome of what we all agree is a cost-benefit
> tradeoff.
> [...]

I don't really see it. You seem to be introducing a cost for authors  
because some theoretical markup language will at some point adopt the  
namespaced version of ARIA. But there's no such language now, so that cost  
is rather theoretical.

The further points you make in your e-mail are already known. I saw in the  
TAG minutes you considered this to be new information, but I can assure  
you that it's not.

Your solution also doesn't solve any of the problems:

  * Authors cannot use setAttribute() and getAttribute(). Instead they have  
to write a set of custom methods. This gives increased authoring cost.

  * Authors cannot style these attributes properly accross clients.

  * If at some point in the future we want to give meaning to the colon in  
HTML5 we couldn't do it because this solution for ARIA would be broken by  
such a decision.

  * This solution introduces two different sets of attributes rather than  
one. I don't think that's architecturally sound and I think it will be  
confusing for authors trying to switch from HTML to XHTML. (I don't expect  
people to use the abstract methods they have to make themselves.)

  * This solution would violate several HTML design principles[1] as well.  
Most importantly "DOM Consistency", but also "Degrade Gracefully",  
"Evolution Not Revolution", "Solve Real Problems", "Priority of  
Constituencies", and "Avoid Needless Complexity".


Anne van Kesteren

Received on Friday, 18 April 2008 07:51:55 UTC