[whatwg] [html5] tags, elements and generated DOM

Lachlan Hunt lachlan.hunt at lachy.id.au
Thu Apr 7 04:24:16 PDT 2005

Anne van Kesteren wrote:
> Ian Hickson wrote:
>> This doesn't stop conformance checker implements from writing DTDs of 
>> their own and then placing them in their SGML catalog so that the 
>> HTML5 DOCTYPE triggers that DTD, though. The point is that different 
>> conformance checker vendors should be able to write their own DTD for 
>> HTML5 to complement the rest of the conformance checking process. As 
>> the mix between DTD-based and other checking will probably be 
>> vendor-dependent, I don't see why we'd want to elevate any particular 
>> DTD to official status.

If every conformance checker has to implement their own, there's more 
chance they some of them will make mistakes, and each end up with 
differing DOCTYPES.  If that happens, then chances are each validator 
would give differing results, which is even more confusing and would 
result in no-one validating at all!  If there is only one official 
DOCTYPE, then at least all validators would have a chance of giving 
identical results, and mistakes can be managed from one place by filing 
errata for it, and updating it as necessary.

I realise how difficult DTDs can be to write, especially given the size 
and complexity of these HTML5 specs, and I doubt I could do one by 
myself, but if I had time, I would certainly contribute to writing one 
in any way I could.

> Entities. Or is that problem going to be solved by: "use UTF-8"?

I wouldn't bother including character entity references in HTML 5, their 
use should be deprecated, although UAs should be advised to support the 
HTML4 entities for bugwards compatibility.

Numeric character references is all that is needed.  However, unicode 
should be strongly recommended, in which case only   or   
(no-break space) would ever be useful (though rarely used anyway), 
simply to distinguish it from a regular space in the source code.

Ian Hickson wrote:
> In my world that is solved by no longer claiming that HTML is an SGML 
> application.

There is no need to make HTML 5 no longer an SGML application.  The only 
reason one might consider it to not be is due to broken documents, which 
should be fixed and for which their handling can be mostly defined, and 
broken UAs which should be fixed also.  A fully conformant HTML 5 
document will still be a fully conformant SGML document, so I see no 
need for this change at all.

Lachlan Hunt
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