TAG Comments on HTML5 Distributed Extensibility Survey

To: the HTML WG

The TAG notes that the HTML Working Group is running a survey [1] regarding 
the choice between two options for HTML extensibility, the options being 
known informally as "like SVG" [2] and "zero edit" [3]. The TAG understands 
that the survey specifically seeks responses from individual HTML WG 
members, but we hope that our opinions expressed here may be of value in 
any case.

The TAG and many of its individual members have in the past expressed 
support for providing distributed extensibility not just for 
application/xhtml+xml, but for the text/html serializations as well. 
Furthermore, we continue to believe that maximizing compatibility between 
these formats, I.e. supporting so-called "polyglot" documents, remains an 
important goal.

On balance, the TAG believes that the "like SVG" option is superior to 
"zero-edit", and we hope that it will be adopted by the HTML working group. 
It is, of course, a compromise in a number of dimensions, but we feel that 
it represents a significant positive and pragmatic step toward providing 
the needed extensibility.  We think the "like-SVG" proposal provides the 
basis for distributed extensibility, with the additional benefit of placing 
virtually all the burden of using the proposed mechanism on those who 
choose to use it, since namespace-awareness is already necessary for SVG 
and MathML.

We appreciate your consideration of our opinion, and indeed, we remain 
grateful for the ongoing attention that the HTML WG has given to the TAG's 
concerns regarding HTML5 extensibility.

Distributed extensibility is an important area for managing the evolution 
of Web content. We understand that the details of how to accomplish this 
are difficult, and that "like SVG" may be the best we can accomplish for 
HTML at this time. However, we support continued, serious, additional W3C 
work on distributed extensibility, independently of what can be 
accomplished for HTML5 "last call".

Thank you very much.

Noah Mendelsohn
For the W3C Technical Architecture Group

[1] http://www.w3.org/2002/09/wbs/40318/issue-41-objection-poll/results
[2] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/ChangeProposals/extensionslikesvg
[3] http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/User:Eoconnor/ISSUE-41

Received on Friday, 8 October 2010 02:02:07 UTC