[whatwg] HTML as a text format: Should <title> be optional?

Michael Enright michael.enright at gmail.com
Thu Jun 4 17:17:43 PDT 2009

> On Fri, 17 Apr 2009, Michael Enright wrote:
>> If you use HTML as a text file format you can still let the receiving
>> parser infer all sorts of tags and allow yourself to write things like
>> Andersen's first HTML version. If you want a title, put a title element
>> in. Is the concern about validation? Can one really get in that much
>> trouble without a pedantic validator checking your work? Could the
>> validator's warning about missing doctype be taken as advisory? Is the
>> doctype a problem? It only affects the details of rendering (by turning
>> off quirks) and HTML5 is still not equivalent to pagemaker anyway,
>> especially without CSS.
> I'm not sure what you are asking for here.

I was addressing the potential drawbacks of permitting oneself to make
an HTML file that didn't have a DOCTYPE in it. One of the drawbacks
might be that the rendering would be in quirks mode. But if an author
is leaving off tags, they aren't in a position to demand precise
rendering in the first place. It's okay with me if DOCTYPE is required
for valid HTML5 as long as in practice the parsers behave predictably
when it isn't there.

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