[html5] What is the point about nav, header, footer and aside elements?

Jukka K. Korpela jukka.k.korpela at kolumbus.fi
Wed Nov 28 12:45:27 PST 2012

2012-11-28 22:27, Ian Hickson wrote:
> The term "semantics" as used in the context of HTML elements is what 
> you describe in your first paragraph. The elements, via their 
> definitions in the spec, describe what kind of content is there.

So, basically, the word "semantic" is used very differently from its 
meaning in normal English, where it means "relating to meaning". This 
would be funny, if it were not so serious and if it did not confuse 
people so much.

For example, when someone even mentions the use of a <table> for layout, 
or the <font> element, there will be people explaining how that is 
"semantically" wrong and that <div> and <span> elements be used instead 
(even though they are, by definition, void of any meaning).

I wonder if it is too late to change the language of specifications to 
refer to structural rather than semantic markup. Possibly distinguishing 
between internal document structure (such as division into main content, 
navigation, header, and footer) and structure of layout.

A distinction between semantic and structural would be useful, because 
there is really semantic markup, such as microdata, microformats, and 
RDFa markup.

Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

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