[html5] Identifying HTML 5 documents? (vs. alternate flavors)
jim.correia at pobox.com
Fri Feb 8 06:51:12 PST 2008
[I prematurely hit send on the last message. This message augments the
On Feb 8, 2008, at 4:44 AM, Henri Sivonen wrote:
> If there are issues we don't foresee now but we see when the
> successor of HTML5 is being defined, we can make the successor have
> a distinguishing feature at that time.
After reading through the message you pointed through, as well as
others found via searching, it sounds as though we've been around this
block a time or two by now and that the spec authors are rather
inflexible about this point (and no new arguments have swayed them)?
Having a distinguishing feature at this time would make it possible to
build tools which failed more gracefully when feed a document from a
newer spec, as well as simplify the issue of checking conformance for
a tree of mixed documents.
Suppose an HTML5 conformance checker were fed an HTML6 document. If
there were a way to distinguish the two based on version, the
conformance checker could say "This document declares conformance to
HTML6, but we only know how to check conformance for HTML5" rather
than generate a bunch of error messages for new elements/attributes.
To be clear, I'm not approaching this solely from the point of view of
the technical aspects of the specification. I'm approaching it from
the point of view of wanting to put useful tools in the hands of users
that they can use today, on their legacy documents, and carry them
forward to HTML5 (and beyond.)
These tools need to be easy to use, require as little configuration as
possible (ideally none). Anything else, in my experience, will
frustrate users, and they'll just abandon the tools and not worry
about writing conformant documents.
For many people, it is a huge step to go from "works in my browser" to
using any sort of conformance checker at all. Making the tools harder
to use in real world situations won't help that cause.
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