[whatwg] Switching to an unversioned development model

David Bruant bruant at enseirb-matmeca.fr
Sat Jan 9 10:13:02 PST 2010

Le 09/01/2010 05:24, Philip Jägenstedt a écrit :
> On Sat, 09 Jan 2010 11:12:29 +0100, Ian Hickson <ian at hixie.ch> wrote:
>> Just a quick update:
>> On Fri, 11 Dec 2009, Ian Hickson wrote:
>>> Since the W3C is still focused on getting HTML5 to last call, I'll
>>> maintain a WHATWG copy of the HTML spec that matches what the W3C HTML
>>> WG is working on:
>>>    http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/html5/
>> With the recent churn of modules in the HTML WG, in particular with the
>> HTML WG's decision to publish Microdata separately from HTML5 (if at 
>> all),
>> I've given up trying to keep a WHATWG copy of the HTML5 spec that 
>> matches
>> what the W3C publish (it would have to be several documents, and that 
>> is a
>> pain to maintain).
>> I'll continue to keep the WHATWG HTML draft a superset of the W3C draft,
>> meaning that anything that's in HTML5 at the W3C will also be in the
>> WHATWG HTML draft. Right now, the only thing that's in the WHATWG HTML
>> draft only (and not in any other spec elsewhere) is the <device> 
>> element,
>> which is purely experimental and might not go anywhere.
> That's unfortunate, but oh well. Is WHATWG HTML is intended to stay at 
> "Working Draft" indefinitely, or does the spec status not really mean 
> anything at this point?

As said in the whatwg wiki "The point to all this is that you shouldn’t 
place too much weight on the status of the specification as a whole. You 
need to consider the stability and maturity level of each section 
individually. ".
However, I think I understand the underlying idea which is that if we 
keep adding things, the HTML5 spec will never reach the recommendation 
status (even for 2022).
The <device> element offers a very interesting potential. However, I 
have the impression that it will require years of work before having a 
first good "working draft" because of diversity of devices sorts and 
even devices serving the same purpose.
In my humble opinion, it would be wiser if the device element had its 
own separate specification and wasn't lost within an already almost one 
million pixels height spec.

While reading the whatwg wiki section "When will HTML5 be finished? ", I 
realized that it is currently hard for web authors to answer the 
question "what sections of the spec are at the 'Implemented and widely 
deployed' status ?"
It might be a good idea for communication around the HTML5 spec to keep 
an updated list of sections and subsections sorted by level of maturity. 
Another (complementary ?) idea would be to provide this information in 
the table of content by putting titles of sections/subsections in 
different colors (and/or background color). It would be a good way for 
people who are discovering HTML5 to understand what they are somehow 
"allowed" to use today.



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