W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-tag@w3.org > October 2011

Re: Friction and cross pollination

From: Robin Berjon <robin@berjon.com>
Date: Tue, 18 Oct 2011 21:53:21 +0200
Cc: Michael Champion <Michael.Champion@microsoft.com>, Noah Mendelsohn <nrm@arcanedomain.com>, "ndw@nwalsh.com" <ndw@nwalsh.com>, "www-tag@w3.org" <www-tag@w3.org>
Message-Id: <28C19A11-102A-4F38-8405-F5E95EC96AF4@berjon.com>
To: Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>
On Oct 18, 2011, at 20:52 , Larry Masinter wrote:
> A far as HTML and XML go, I think saying there are "two ecosystems" for the web is an unhelpful perspective. Sure, there is an ecosystem of HTML without XML; after all, it's what we had in the web before XML came along.  And I suppose there is something you could call an XML-only ecosystem.

There is. Once you leave XML document-land, most of the XML ecosystem is largely HTML-free (most would say that it is Web-free, but that's a rathole).

> However, there is a community that works with both HTML and XML, in which XML tools are used to produce, refine, manipulate HTML material, and it seems like the ability to combine the two while remaining conforming to W3C specifications isn't getting better but, rather, worse. The new specs may "reflect reality" but we're moving to more divergence, and the benefits don't seem to compensate for the loss. 

I know there is such a community, I've long been part of it. I do not however see this move to more divergence that you are describing. A lot of the previous supposed convergence was largely fake, e.g. serving XHTML as text/html. Once you remove the faux convergence, I find that we're actually making decent progress. Perhaps not enough, perhaps not as far as some would like, but progress nevertheless. SVG can now be used in HTML; not long ago it required ungodly hacks of brute force (for a sample, just look at what this does: http://berjon.com/js/force-svg.js  we no longer need it). It is now meaningful to put an HTML parser at the front of an XML pipeline  I still remember when you had to use a mixture of sizeable regular expressions outlawed in most dry counties and libxml2's failure-tolerant mode that would sometimes change subtly between versions because there simply was no agreed-upon way that that could be done. As a plus side, XML is no longer being perceived as a threat to some of the more religious Web crowd so much of the heckling has abated.

So I certainly don't see the drift apart which you describe. I'd welcome pointers though.

Robin Berjon - http://berjon.com/ - @robinberjon
Received on Tuesday, 18 October 2011 19:53:48 UTC

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