[whatwg] RDFa

Ben Adida ben at adida.net
Fri Aug 22 16:49:36 PDT 2008

Silvia Pfeiffer wrote:
> I would like to understand exactly what changes to the existing HTML5
> spec would be required to support RDFa. Ben - can you clarify? Maybe
> the extension mechanism that Ian refers to already covers all the
> needs, but it has not been clarified.

Thanks for the straight-forward question Silvia :) This is a very rough
answer, not a detailed proposal.

We would need 5 new attributes to become valid and reserved for RDFa
use: @property, @about, @typeof, @resource, and @datatype. It would be
nice if @rev didn't go away, since we use it, and we also use @rel,
which already exists (our use of it doesn't conflict with microformats
or existing ad-hoc approaches.)

There's the question of how we bind prefixes like "dc" to the Dublin
Core URL. I think xmlns would actually work nicely in HTML5, since it
can't be interpreted to mean anything else (unlike the slight ambiguity
in XHTML for which Henri gives us grief.) But we are considering other
ways that don't include the letters X, M, and L, since those seem to be
explosive :)

We would not expect browsers to do anything at all for the purposes of
HTML5, though of course they could choose to do interesting stuff with
the RDFa if they wanted to.

In other words, this is only about reserved attributes, not about
features that browsers would have to implement (other than making the
attributes available in the DOM API.)


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