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Re: Comments on HTML WG face to face meetings in France Oct 08

From: Elliotte Harold <elharo@metalab.unc.edu>
Date: Mon, 17 Nov 2008 19:29:27 -0800
Message-ID: <49223697.4090601@metalab.unc.edu>
To: Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@MIT.EDU>
Cc: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, "Henry S. Thompson" <ht@inf.ed.ac.uk>, public-html <public-html@w3.org>, www-tag@w3.org

Boris Zbarsky wrote:

> It's just a PI, then something that starts out looking like XML but has 
> a mismatched close tag.  The XML specification doesn't preclude 
> construction of a DOM out of this text, and some XML consumers do just 
> that.  Others treat the mismatched close tag as a fatal error and do not 
> produce a DOM.  The inconsistency is a problem.

Actually there's a lot more inconsistency than that. The XML 
specification doesn't require anything in particular, even if the close 
tag were present. The assumption that DOM is what you want or will get 
is a big leap.

I would say the XML specification does require the error to be reported 
to the user, though perhaps a partial syntax tree of some kind could be 
constructed from this. But again, exactly how this is handled is up to 
the consuming application, not the document producer.

Beyond error handling, a big concern I have with HTML 5 as written is 
that it mixes together multiple layers that should be separate. The 
object model by which one accesses a document is very different from the 
syntax of the document, the semantics of the document, and the display 
of the document in a particular medium. HTML 5 treats these as more or 
less  different views of the same thing rather than as separable, 
independent pieces that connect to but do not depend on each other. A 
monolithic design like this is far less flexible and extensible.

Elliotte Rusty Harold  elharo@metalab.unc.edu
Refactoring HTML Just Published!
Received on Tuesday, 18 November 2008 03:30:03 UTC

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