[whatwg] Idea: Links w/o end anchors (is possible)

Ian Hickson ian at hixie.ch
Sat Aug 1 02:54:53 PDT 2009

On Wed, 22 Jul 2009, ppj wrote:
> The Goal: Links w/o anchors.                                                                                           
> The Strategy: Two stage process. 
> 1) get an extra 'search' attribute on to the <a> tag in HTML so that we
> have:                                                           
> e.g. <a href='...' search='...'>link text</a>

This is already possible using XPointer.

> 2) If there's take-up, then later on push for adding a date-time of 
> creation attribute to <a>. This will add link history to the internet.

This doesn't seem to be necessary to solve the problem you stated.

On Wed, 22 Jul 2009 Darxus at ChaosReigns.com wrote:
> It seems odd to me that the definition of the id attribute doesn't 
> mention its use as a fragment identifier. 
> http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/dom.html#the-id-attribute

I've added a paragraph mentioning the uses of the id="" attribute.

On Wed, 22 Jul 2009, ppj wrote:
> Folks have suggested XPointer vs. attribute hack on the <a> element. But 
> I would prefer the element to have something superficial ordinary people 
> can understand, even if behind the scenes the browser turns that into 
> XPointer.

I'm not convinced that the syntax of XPointer is preventing authors from 
using it. I think the lack of implementations, or the lack of desire to 
use the feature, are more likely problems.

> What's the present rate of user uptake of XPointer?

XPointer has not seen much success in getting browsers to implement it, 
unfortunately, and the only implementation I know of (Gecko for XML 
documents) isn't used much.

I encourage you to look at this FAQ entry:


...for advice on how to bring this feature forward.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'

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