Re: Why polyglot is needed

Henri Sivonen writes:

> On Wed, Mar 20, 2013 at 3:25 PM, Henry S. Thompson <> wrote:
>> Ex hypothesi both those options are foreclosed.  You may think that
>>  a) I shouldn't want to work in XML
> I don't. I think you need to use a text/html serializer at the end of
> your workflow. As far as publishing goes, the text/html serializer
> doesn't need to be polyglot. (As seen from your example, a
> text/html-unaware XML serializer won't do.)

But that involves me in maintaining two distint-but-equivalent end
products, the XML one which I use for my own purposes, and the
text/html one, which I use only for publishing.  That's bad software

More to the point, it's un-necessary.  The whole point of this
exercise is that _polyglot exists_.  And those of us who operate in
XML-space are used to producing its predecessor, i.e.
Appendix-C-XHTML, and we see benefit in continuing to do the parallel
thing as the world transitions to HTML5.

No-one, as far as I know, denies that there _is_ a maximally bilingual
subset of HTML5.  All we're arguing about is whether the W3C should
document it in TR space.

> If you want to re-ingest into your workflow as XML the same bytes that
> you are forced to publish as HTML, then you have a polyglot use case,
> but stipulating that they have to be the same bytes is a self-imposed
> constraint. I'm not even opposing to you self-imposing such a
> contraint on yourself if you write your own tooling for satisfying the
> constraint. I'm against presenting the case as something that should
> have general (as opposed to special-case) utility and tool support,
> which is what publication by the W3C would look like.

One person's special case is another's common-sense sweet-spot.  Just
as Appendix-C-XHTML addressed a niche, so does Polyglot.  Having
TR-space documentation of Appendix-C-XHTML didn't prevent ordinary
HTML from dominating the Web, and neither will having TR-space
documentation of Polyglot.

       Henry S. Thompson, School of Informatics, University of Edinburgh
      10 Crichton Street, Edinburgh EH8 9AB, SCOTLAND -- (44) 131 650-4440
                Fax: (44) 131 650-4587, e-mail:
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Received on Wednesday, 20 March 2013 14:32:32 UTC