[whatwg] xml:lang and xmlns in HTML

Ian Hickson ian at hixie.ch
Fri Dec 1 08:07:39 PST 2006

On Fri, 1 Dec 2006, Michel Fortin wrote:
> I wonder if xml:lang and xmlns couldn't be made legal in HTML. xml:lang 
> would simply become conformant in HTML as a synonym for the lang 
> attribute, it's already in the spec that it should get the correct 
> treatment anyway.

Except that wouldn't be backwards compatible since xml:lang="" isn't 
treated as a language attribute in legacy UAs.

> This would make it possible to have documents conformant with both 
> syntaxes at the same time.

I thought XHTML-sent-as-text/html had explained in painful detail why 
that's not a desirable end goal. Why would we want this?

> This could also help reinforce the idea that it's the media type that 
> differentiate HTML from XHTML. It'd make many valid XHTML1 documents out 
> there conformant with HTML5 with a mere modification to the doctype.

Not if they use things like <![CDATA[...]]> or the empty element syntax on 
non-void elements, or any number of other XMLisms.

> What do you think?

I don't think it's a goal for the two serialisations to have a common 

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
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