[whatwg] Canvas element

Olav Junker Kjær olav at olav.dk
Wed Apr 20 08:20:28 PDT 2005

I don't completely understand the rationale for the canvas-element in WA1.

It seems to overlap a lot with the use case for SVG. Of course WF2 
competes directly with XForms also, but WF2 has the critical advantage 
that it is backwards compatible, implementable in script (which allows 
an IE implementation), and leverages existing knowledge.

Canvas does none of this, its completely new and has to be implemented 
by the browser vendors. This rules out that it will ever be supported by 
IE, which in turn means that it will not be used on the world wide web 
in the foreseeable future (and most likely never). I understand that it 
was invented by Apple for use in platform specific applications. This 
makes sense, and it also makes sense that other vendors might want to 
support it in non-www contexts. Mozilla could use it in XUL, for example.

However I dont think it belongs in a spec which is intended to cover 
*web* applications. SVG is at least usable in IE through a plug-in for 
IE, but realistically, anyone who needs interactive vector graphics on 
the web is going to use flash.

Olav Junker Kjær

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