[whatwg] <hgroup> functionality absorbed into <header>?

Ian Hickson ian at hixie.ch
Sun Oct 18 00:54:59 PDT 2009

On Fri, 16 Oct 2009, Kornel LesiÅ~Dski wrote:
> On 9 Oct 2009, at 09:18, Ian Hickson wrote:
> > 
> > For example, the W3C copy of HTML5 says:
> > 
> >   <h1>HTML5</h1>
> >   <h2>A vocabulary and associated APIs for HTML and XHTML</h2>
> >   <h2>Editor's Draft 9 October 2009</h2>
> >   ...
> >   <h2>Abstract</h2>
> > ...which is what it would be interpreted as. This is what is meant:
> > 
> >   <section>
> >    <h1>HTML5;
> >        A vocabulary and associated APIs for HTML and XHTML;
> >        Editor's Draft 9 October 2009</h1>
> If that's what you mean, why not write it this way?
>    <h1>HTML5
>       <span class="subtitle">
>        A vocabulary and associated APIs for HTML and XHTML<br>
>        Editor's Draft 9 October 2009</span></h1>

Because "HTML5 A vocabulary and associated APIs for HTML and XHTML
Editor's Draft 9 October 2009" is not the title of the document. The title 
is "HTML5", and the rest are distinct subtitles. People already use <h2> 
in this manner, it's a well-established pattern.

> Your version with split <h2> seems to use it only for visual effect.

Not just visual, but presentational, yes, pretty much. It also makes it 
clear how to generate the outline.

> I still think that <subtitle> (subheader, tagline) would be just as 
> effective, less confusing and less likely to break outline when used 
> improperly...

How is <h2> confusing? It's what people do already. I think something like 
<subtitle> is just as likely to be misused as <hgroup>, to be honest. 
Also, it has a much poorer legacy (backwards compatibility) story.

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

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