[whatwg] New URL Standard

Anne van Kesteren annevk at annevk.nl
Mon Sep 24 01:58:20 PDT 2012

On Fri, Sep 21, 2012 at 5:36 PM, Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky at mit.edu> wrote:
> On 9/21/12 11:16 AM, Anne van Kesteren wrote:
>> * data URLs; in Gecko these appear to be parsed as part of the URL
>> layer, because they can turn a URL invalid. Other browsers do not do
>> this. Opinions? Should data URLs support .search?
> I'm not quite sure what you mean by "parsed as part of the URL layer" here.
> What's the concern?

Say you have <a href="data:test"/>; the concern is what e.g.
a.protocol and a.pathname would return here. For invalid URLs they
would return ":" and "" respectively. If we treat this as a valid URL
you would get "data:" and "test". In Gecko I get "http:" and "". If I
make that <a href="data:text/html,test"/> Gecko will give meaningful
answers (well pathname is still "", maybe that is okay and pathname
should only work for hierarchical URLs).

More general, what I want is that for *any* given input in <a
href="..."/>, xhr.open("GET", ...), new URL(...), etc. I want to be
able to tell what the various URL components are going to be. The kind
of predictability we have for the HTML parser, I want to have for the
URL parser as well.

(If that means handling data URLs at the layer of the URL parser
rather than a separate parser that goes over the path, as Gecko
appears to be doing, so be it.)

>> * Advice on file URLs would be nice.
> Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here?  ;)
> If you want constructive advice, it would be interesting to get a full list
> of all the weird stuff that UAs do here so we can evaluate which parts of it
> are needed and why.  I can try to produce such a list for Gecko, if there
> seems to be motion on the general idea.

I think that would be a great start. I'm happy to start out with
Gecko's behavior and iterate over time as feedback comes in from other


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