[whatwg] Menus, fallback, and backwards compatibility: ideas wanted

Sander Tekelenburg tekelenb at euronet.nl
Sat Dec 10 10:08:15 PST 2005

At 20:38 +0000 UTC, on 2005/12/09, Ian Hickson wrote:

> On Fri, 9 Dec 2005, Sander Tekelenburg wrote:


> <link> has had ten years to prove itself. It failed. We should learn from
> this and not force ourselves to give it another ten years. :-)

Indeed we should learn from this, but my conclusion would rather be that what
we should learn from it is that we need to be a little bit more ambitious ;)

> <menu> is not really primarily for navigation (that's what <nav> is for).
> The main use case I'm considering is command menus, as seen in
> applications like Yahoo Mail, Hotmail, etc.

Ah. Maybe I misunderstood your aim then. I got the impression there was also
talk of "navigation menus" in this thread. Is the idea then that <nav> may
contain <menu>, to define a menu to be for navigation? (I'll assume this for
the example below.) Or did I completely misunderstand and is menu not meant
to be used for navigation at all?


>> That way
>> web publishers wouldn't need to dupicate navigational links anymore and
>> user-agents could allow users to decide whether to present such menus
>> inline in accordance with the site's suggested presentation (CSS), or in
>> the sort of toolbar that current browsers offer for LINK.
> I'm not really sure how this would work. Could you give a more concrete
> specification for your idea?

attributes: type, etc.
type attribute values:
	- import
	Informs the user agent that the document's LINK elements are to be
imported (as list items) into the menu. If the <menu> element is empty,
user-agents may choose to not draw the menu at all but instead provide access
to the LINK elements through a meta mechanism, such as a LINKs Toolbar for

Example markup:

<link rel="home" HREF="index.html" title="Home">
<link rel="contents" HREF="toc.html" title="TOC">
<link rel="help" HREF="help.html" title="Help">
<link rel="search" HREF="search.html" title="Search">
<link rel="address" HREF="address" title="Contact">
<menu type="import">

The user-agent would parse this as either:


and providing access to the LINKs through, for example, a LINKs Toolbar

or, if no such LINKs Toolbar is available, as:

<menu type="import">
<li><A HREF="index.html">Home</A></li>
<li><A HREF="toc.html">TOC</A></li>
<li><A HREF="help.html">Help</A></li>
<li><A HREF="search.html">Search</A></li>
<li><A HREF="address.html">Contact</A></li>

Sander Tekelenburg, <http://www.euronet.nl/~tekelenb/>

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