[whatwg] Re: Doctype FPI

Henri Sivonen hsivonen at iki.fi
Wed Jul 14 08:59:40 PDT 2004

On Jul 14, 2004, at 11:24 AM, Ian Hickson wrote:

> On Tue, 13 Jul 2004, Terje Bless wrote:

>    http://ln.hixie.ch/?start=1029524973&count=1
>    and the answers: http://ln.hixie.ch/?start=1029713028&count=1

(Easy :-)

>> Since you seem to envision not actually having any DTD to speak of,
>> where do you see named entity references fitting into the picture?
> If the author wants entities, then the (otherwise mostly empty) DTD 
> would
> be the right place for them.

It is the right place only in a private system. That is, if the author 
uses a tool that parses the DTD and reserializes the document either as 
DTDless XML or as text/html soup for delivery over the public network.

I think user agents should not be required to use XML processors that 
parse the DTD. Also, authors should not be given the impression that 
entities (other than the 5 predefined ones) are suitable for use on the 
Web when the content is parsed as XML. (I consider the inclusion of the 
HTML 4 entities in the XHTML DTDs as a serious spec bug.)

Of course, in the tag soup mode (text/html) the HTML 4 entities are 
available regardless of the DTD.

>> What SGML Declaration do you intend be in effect?
> I do not intend to pretend that current UAs even have the concept of an
> SGML Declaration.

Or SGML in general...

> Yes. People rely on DTDs in a way which has led to millions of authors 
> to
> have a false sense of having done the right thing, when in fact their
> documents are sometimes worse than documents that are syntactically
> slightly broken but semantically fine.

Hear hear.

>> I suggest a more constructive approach might be to provide the hooks 
>> in
>> the DTD, and in the specification, for a suitable Schema language; and
>> to actually publish a normative Schema for the resulting language.
> Schemas aren't much better.

If WHAT WG decides to endorse a formalism for (partially) assessing 
syntactic conformance, I'd prefer Relax NG on the XHTML side.

Henri Sivonen
hsivonen at iki.fi

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