[whatwg] More thoughts about custom widgets

Olav Junker Kjær olav at olav.dk
Tue Nov 23 10:40:51 PST 2004

Jim Ley wrote:
> but as these user agents are all going to be needed to be updated to
> support WF2, I really don't see the point - what you propose is
> already perfectly possible, but no-one's doing it because it's ugly
> and non-trivial to avoid namespace collisions etc.  XBL goes a good
> way to solving these issues, it really does seem stupid to do anything
> that fills the gap between what we have now and XBL.

Well, one of the design goals of WF2 was that it should be possible to 
implement most of the spec on Internet Explorer 6 through non-binary 
extensions (which basically means javascript and htc-files). Even if it 
was possible to build a compatibility layer so IE could support XBL 
(like Dean Edwards have done the other way around to make mozilla 
support htc behaviors), it would be a much larger project than what WF2 
aims for.

Lots of different input widgets have been developed in javascript. These 
would often easily be modified to integrate with WF2 with the proposed 
extensions. It would be a serious obstacle if a javascript widget should 
first be ported to a largely unknown and completely different 
programming model, only to run through a complex XBL eumulation layer 
which turns the code back into ordinary javascript, just to be able to 
use a 100 line color picker widget in a WF2 form.

But I agree that something like XBL is the long-term solution to this 
kind of extensibility.

Olav Junker Kjær

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