[whatwg] native styling for search input boxes

Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis bhawkeslewis at googlemail.com
Thu Oct 2 02:28:57 PDT 2008

Kristof Zelechovski wrote:
> I hoped to see an example of an actual semantic improvement of introducing
> INPUT[type=SEARCH].  Maciej described a conceptual improvement for the ideal
> world; in the real world, the developers will have to use the heuristics
> anyway because there are search fields in the wild not marked as such and
> most of them will remain that way of course.

If HTML5 assumes user agents should rely on heuristics to detect Search 
fields, it should specify those heuristics (rather than forcing 
user-agents to reverse engineer them). Do you have an algorithm you 
would like to propose?

When it triggers a different interface and functionality in popular 
browsers, explicit markup is unlikely to be accidental and relying on 
explicit markup is preferable to heuristics alone. Hence the existence 
of semantic markup (heading elements, microformats, etc.).

Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis

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