[whatwg] Proposal for autocompletetype Attribute in HTML5 Specification
isherman at chromium.org
Mon Feb 6 15:54:05 PST 2012
On Thu, Jan 26, 2012 at 3:01 PM, Ilya Sherman <isherman at chromium.org> wrote:
> On Thu, Dec 15, 2011 at 1:17 PM, Ilya Sherman <isherman at chromium.org>wrote:
>> Current autofill products rely on contextual clues to determine the type
>> of data that should be filled into form elements. Examples of these
>> contextual clues include the name of the input element, the text
>> surrounding it, and placeholder text.
>> We have discussed the shortcomings of these ad hoc approaches with
>> developers of several autofill products, and all have been interested in a
>> solution that would let website authors classify their form fields
>> themselves. While current methods of field classification work in general,
>> for many cases they are unreliable or ambiguous due to the many variations
>> and conventions used by web developers when creating their forms:
>> + Ambiguity: Fields named "name" can mean a variety of things,
>> including given name, surname, full name, username, or others. Similar
>> confusion can occur among other fields, such as email address and street
>> + Internationalization: Recognizing field names and context clues for
>> all the world’s languages is impractical, time-intensive, and error-prone
>> (as good context clues in one language may mean something else in another
>> + Unrelated Naming: Due to backend requirements (such as a framework
>> that a developer is working within), developers may be constrained in what
>> they can name their fields. As such, the name of a field may be unrelated
>> from the data it contains.
>> We believe that website authors have strong incentive to facilitate
>> autofill on their forms to help convert users in purchase and registration
>> flows. Additionally, this assists users by streamlining their experience.
>> To that end we would like to propose adding an autocompletetype attribute
>>  to the HTML5 specification, as a complement to the existing
>> autocomplete attribute that would eliminate ambiguity from the process of
>> determining input data types. We developed this initial draft proposal
>> working together with developers or several autofill products, and are now
>> looking forward to feedback and suggestions from the broader community.
>>  http://wiki.whatwg.org/wiki/Autocompletetype
>> ~Ilya Sherman, Chromium Autofill Developer
> Copying from the "autocompletetype vs autocomplete, type attributes"
> On Thu, Jan 26, 2012 at 5:03 AM, Kornel Lesiński <kornel at geekhood.net>
>> How about merging autocompletetype with autocomplete then?
>> It looks sensible to me:
>> <input autocomplete=off> <input autocomplete=email>
>> In case of <form autocomplete=off><input autocomplete=email></form> I'd
>> expect autocomplete=email to override form's "off" value.
> I actually like this idea a lot. We had previously chosen not to extend
> the autocomplete attribute because we were worried about backward
> compatibility. In particular, we were worried that existing user agents
> might interpret <input type="text" autocomplete="bogus"> -- and hence also
> <input type="text" autocomplete="email"> -- to be equivalent to <input
> type="text" autocomplete="off">. However, I just checked with IE, Chrome,
> Firefox, Safari, and Opera -- all simply ignore autocomplete="bogus". So,
> we seem to be ok in terms of backward compatibility -- hooray!
> If I don't see any objections over the next few days, I'll go ahead and
> update the proposal to extend the autocomplete attribute rather than
> introducing the additional autocompletetype attribute.
Since I saw no objections, I've gone ahead and made this update. The
wording could probably use some editing/tweaking -- feel free to nitpick,
and especially to edit away nits if you have a wiki account with suitable
I have also updated all the token names to match hCard where possible.
Please let me know -- preferably on the token name-specific thread -- if
you see any remaining issues with the token names.
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