[whatwg] Administrivia: Update on the relationship between the WHATWG HTML living standard and the W3C HTML5 specification

Bronislav Klučka Bronislav.Klucka at bauglir.com
Wed Jul 25 08:09:43 PDT 2012

On 25.7.2012 16:52, David Bruant wrote:
> Le 25/07/2012 16:36, Bronislav Klučka a écrit :
>> On 25.7.2012 16:04, David Bruant wrote:
>>> Le 25/07/2012 15:32, Bronislav Klučka a écrit :
>>>> And my last remark: I hope major browser vendors will chose to 
>>>> follow the same path, the same implementation of tasks, but not all 
>>>> major vendors are part of WHATWG (as far as I know), and if some 
>>>> choose to follow W3C and some different WHATWG drafts of the same 
>>>> task, what would happen?
>>> Interesting question...
>>>> (Thou I do not think it actually will happen). To put it simply, it 
>>>> does not matter, what either W3C or WHATWG codify, what matter is, 
>>>> what browsers implement - it was always about vendors...
>>> ... which you answer yourself to.
>>> If the WHATWG continue to work in ways that we know (including 
>>> codifying de facto standards to preserve content backward 
>>> compatibility), then no matter what browsers will to do (follow one 
>>> spec or several or none), the end result is that the WHATWG will 
>>> codify what works.
>>> As an example, they spec'ed innerHTML which was first implemented in 
>>> IE (and followed by all others) which isn't part of the WHATWG. 
>>> There are probably dozens of these examples.
>> This goes to my "Interesting question", I do understand the advantage 
>> of "codifying supported convention", but in case of differences... 
>> And it's already happening (on vendor level... maybe not differences 
>> at the same task, but different approaches on similar tasks, 
>> decisions not to implement some parts of WebApp - but I guess it's 
>> inevitable).
> In case of differences, often, if some content is found to behave 
> differently, some browsers will fix to align with the others after 
> discussion (usually in standards mailing-lists, because that's what 
> they are really here for).
> If at some point all content decide to follow what some browser say, 
> the others will follow creating a de facto standard.
Let me just give you few examples: WebSql, FileSystem - most likely 
dead, thou codified and supported by some; saving blob on disk without 
server round trip (there are 3 different ways to do that, in MSIE, in 
Chrome, in FF), audio/video codecs... There's another part of your "If" 
statement: If they don not decide to follow, you end up with solution 
for some browser, with another (if any) solution in other browser. With 
one WHATWG document some vendors will ignore, or with several competing 
WHATWG documents, or with no WHATWG documentation at all.
> You seem to be worried about what browsers will implement, but in the 
> long term, there is no reason. In the long term, they will all align 
> on parts of the spec that matter (that people cover by writing actual 
> content for it).
> I admit short term is a bit more chaotic, though.
> David

I'm actually not worried at all, after 15 years of web devel, what could 
be worst than developing for NN4 and IE3 simultaneously :). My original 
post was about the "canonical" and other about the irrelevance of W3C 
against browser vendors and more satisfying approach by WHATWG, but that 
can crush also...
The fact, that current state is little annoying (see my examples above) 
is most likely inevitable. It's a tax we have to pay for working in this 
industry. We can either have all cool stable everything (like cca 
between 2002-2007), but actually time stood still in those times. Or we 
can have bit chaotic progress (not just in a short term... yes, 3 years 
from now, all current cool stuff will be peachy, but there will new stuff)


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