[whatwg] The problems with namespaces in text/html

Elliotte Harold elharo at metalab.unc.edu
Sat Nov 4 15:19:20 PST 2006

Henri Sivonen wrote:

> Anne is talking about the text/html serialization, which is supposed to 
> be parsed using an HTML5 parser. It is a special-purpose alternative 
> serialization for a subset of possible infosets--like RELAX NG Compact 
> Syntax. Please ignore the superficial syntactic similarity to XML 1.0.

Does that subset include MathML?

I can accept a simple, subset designed purely for backwards 
compatibility an that can be processed with a special purpose parser.

However if the plan is to mix in entire additional languages, then I 
think this is driving off a cliff. MathML and MathML tools are designed 
under the assumption that they can rely on well-formedness and 
namespaces. Integrating MathML with HTML absolutely needs this.

It sounds to me like the working group is considering the needs of 
thick-client web browsers and people hand-authoring HTML in text editors 
to the complete exclusion of every other community and use case.

Please prove me wrong. If it's not true that you're planning on sending 
mixed HTML and MathML documents on the wire without namespaces or 
perhaps even well-formedness, then please say so; but so far I'm not 
hearing anyone deny that.

Elliotte Rusty Harold  elharo at metalab.unc.edu
Java I/O 2nd Edition Just Published!

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