[whatwg] RE: modal and modeless windows

Mark Birbeck mark.birbeck at x-port.net
Mon Jun 27 02:35:33 PDT 2005


[I'm not on the WhatWG list, so this will probably bounce.]

> I had a short look at the webforms and web applications 
> specification at whatwg.org, I didn't find anything about 
> modal and modeless windows. If there is anything to improve 
> for html, xhtml, xforms and compound documents, then, in my 
> opinion, the first missing feature that comes into my mind is 
> the lack of modal and modeless windows.

XForms does already have modal and modeless messages, and I know that both
X-Smiles and formsPlayer have implemented them in such a way that the
message itself can contain other form controls. (I don't know about other
implementations, but my guess is they probably do, too.)

In other words, you can have a little sub-form that updates the main
instance data, but appears to the user as a separate 'window'. The only
difference then between modal messages and modeless ones are that modal
messages block execution until they have been closed, whilst modeless ones
can happily sit on top of the main form.

Note also that once again we get a much better model in XForms, since
actually what we are talking about is the behaviour of an abstract concept
-- a 'message' -- which will act differently on different platforms. We
don't say use some method call on the document or window object, as we have
to do in current solutions, but which is very difficult to make accessible.



Mark Birbeck
x-port.net Ltd.

e: Mark.Birbeck at x-port.net
t: +44 (0) 20 7689 9232
w: http://www.formsPlayer.com/
b: http://internet-apps.blogspot.com/

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