[html5] What are the potential benefits of using XHTML?

Henri Sivonen hsivonen at iki.fi
Wed Feb 9 01:24:47 PST 2011

Jukka Korpela wrote:
> Jacob Kristensen wrote:
> > Seeing that HTML adds support for SVG etc. When exactly would there
> > be any clear benefits to using XHTML?
> On the practical side, e.g. Firefox does not currently do <svg> in
> HTML mode, but it does do <svg:svg> in XHTML mode.
> In theory, this is expected to change.

"In theory?" Do you put the chances of Firefox 4 actually getting out of beta soonish in the "in theory" category?

Are the expectations of IE9 and Safari shipping with SVG-in-text/html support also in the "in theory" department in your opinion?

> But with XHTML, you can expect to be
> able to inject XML tags from any namespace known to a browser

What namespaces are known to a browser but aren't the namespaces that the HTML parsing algorithm can emit? (Note that as of Firefox 4, XUL is no longer available to random Web sites.)

> Another potential benefit is that with XHTML, the documents are ready
> to be processed by XML tools. 

The benefit is lessened by the availability of HTML parsers that can convert to XHTML or that can expose an API to the application that makes the application think it's dealing with an XML parser.

Henri Sivonen
hsivonen at iki.fi

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