[whatwg] Quick thought on the Combo Box problem...

voracity subs at voracity.org
Tue Jun 29 23:33:28 PDT 2004

Lachlan Hunt wrote:

>   We already have a generic list element.  I'm sure you've heard of it — 
> it's called <ul>.  Why reinvent the wheel, when it rolls out a list just 
> fine?

My bad. I actually don't want a generic list element (be it <list> or <ul>), I 
was merely speculating. I would prefer <datalist> because it clearly specifies 
what the list is --- a list of data. (As opposed to a list of summary points, or 
a list of links, or a navigation menu. <ul> is used to represent all of these 
--- which is, IMO, to the detriment of meaning.)

>>  and then have a 'type' attribute to specialise it for whatever 
>> purpose you want (since there is no <list> tag atm).
>   I don't like the idea of overloading the type attribute any more than 
> it currently is in HTML 4.  XHTML 2 is fixing that by making type only 
> represent the content type of an external resource, and (currently) in 
> some situations the content type of the content within the element (as 
> in <style> and <script>).  Ideally, the type attribute should only
> represent the content type of an external resource, but we'll have to 
> wait and see if that small inconsistency can be fixed or not.  OTOH, 
> HTML 4 uses the type attribute for 10 different reasons on different 
> elements (some presentationally), so please don't overload it any more.

Fair enough. Type (like class or category or kind) is a generic word meaning 
'belongs to the set'. It's unsurprising it gets overused, and I agree it should 
be avoided.

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