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  1. #126
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    The point I'm making is that XHTML is XML
    from A Reformulation of HTML 4 in XML 1.0
    This specification defines the Second Edition of XHTML 1.0, a reformulation of HTML 4 as an XML 1.0 application, and three DTDs corresponding to the ones defined by HTML 4. ...
    How it might be used, misused or abused doesn't change that.

  2. #127
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    it does. how much can you abuse other xml applications? can you make browsers treat svg differentiated, based on a parameter? how it is used changes that: by UAs, by authors. the specification it's only a recommendation, and that makes xhtml not xml.

    and of course i'm not referring to the way you use it i'm sure you are a better web programmer than i am.

  3. #128
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    Well I guess we'll have to agree to disagree in that. To me misused XHTML doesn't make it non-XHTML it makes it misused XHTML.

    As for being "better", that could be debated. Look at the error screen shot. Notice the table tags? True, the site's mark-up has improved a lot from it's AOL Hometown origins, but there's still room for improvement.

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    xhtml was built to be misused.

  5. #130
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    and also theoretically xhtml would still be good while xml will not .
    Only a specific subset of XHTML will work as HTML.

    For example the most efficient way to attach JavaScript to an XHTML page is using:

    <script type="application/javascript"> src=myscript.js"/>

    but that can't be served as HTML because HTML doesn't recognise that the tag is closed while XHTML does.

    XHTML 1.0 was designed to allow people to transition from HTML to XHTML by restricting the way they code to the subset that works both ways until they have switched over in the same way the transitional doctype allows for both HTML 3.2 and HTML 4 tags while transitioning.

    Once you get to XHTML 1.1 there is no way to serve the code as HTML as any use of any XHTML 1.1 specific tag is only valid when served as XHTML.
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  6. #131
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    and we can go again the road you describe, depicts xhtml rather as an intranet feature.

    how much of xhtml 1.1 is an utopia? if html didn't reach maturity, not even after all these years, not even when you think of html 5, what are the prospects for xhtml?

    you seem to think that browsers (non)adoption is what makes xhtml. at best, xhtml stood in the way of a better html5, sooner. it's a hassle that will follow another decade, if it will ever survive that long. now we don't have style sheets good enough, for that we don't use html correctly enough, and, on top of that, we have xhtml specs suffering the same way. so, instead of solving one problem, we have four to go. and html5 brings more nails to the coffin.

    meanwhile, desktop programming makes a come back and takes over the web platform. easier ways/platforms are brought to development, encompassing dektop, web, mobile. all this makes html and xhtml fade out, and xml (real xml) growing confident. silverlight, flash, air, even java, bring "beyond the browser application"; and i start to think if the browser war will end the same way wars usually end: by death: of browsers, of html, of xhtml. think of this: instead of ie, chrome, firefox we'll have to choose between silverlight, air, "whatever".

    so, this xhtml transition is good only on paper. it doesn't take account of the way it should go. it takes account of how it should repair first. this isn't a good time to stop and wait for the repairs. i believe xhtml will not make it out of the pit stop. html has a good chance though

  7. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by felgall View Post
    For example the most efficient way to attach JavaScript to an XHTML page is using:

    <script type="application/javascript"> src=myscript.js"/>

    but that can't be served as HTML because HTML doesn't recognise that the tag is closed while XHTML does.
    Is that first > supposed to be there? Unless that's making use of some shorttag syntax that I'm not aware of, surely the src is then part of the content of the element rather than an attribute of it, which wouldn't work?

  8. #133
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    you seem to think that browsers (non)adoption is what makes xhtml. at best, xhtml stood in the way of a better html5, sooner.
    But all browsers have adopted XHTML. All we are waiting on is for IE8 and earlier to die out and then all browsers will fully support XHTML.
    Microsoft was last to catch up with supporting XHTML by only adding support for it with IE9.

    Since we will need IE10, Firefox 5, etc to have died out before before HTML 5 becomes a practical standard to follow (since those browsers wand possibly several further versions will have been released before HTML 5 becomes a standard and therefore cannot possibly fully support a standard that does not yet exist), it will be practical to use XHTML on the web long before it will be practical to use HTML 5.
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  9. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    it probably is. depends on the programmer.
    XHTML is an application of XML. Period.

    You are confusing this with how an XHTML document is perceived by user agents, which depends on the MIME type with which it is served. That's a very different issue, though.

    If served as , e.g., application/xhtml+xml it is perceived as an application of XML.
    If served as text/html it is perceived as an invalid HTML document. The limited subset outlined in Appendix C will probably 'work' in this way.
    If served as image/png it is perceived as a broken PNG image.

    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    while you can get away with lousy xhtml, if you use xml for other than a web page, you cannot make mistakes, or you'll be punished swiftly.
    Again, this depends on the MIME type. An XHTML web document served as real XHTML is totally unforgiving, since it is an XML document which is parsed and interpreted as XML with the draconian error handling it stipulates.

    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    that's why xhtml does not equal xml.
    They aren't equal any more than pink equals colour. But XHTML is a type of XML, just like pink is a type of colour.

    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    an invalid xhtml document will always be used, while an xml malformed document will never be usable.
    No, an invalid XHTML document will not always be used. But you're comparing apples to oranges in this statement. Validity is something very different from well-formedness.

    A well-formed, but invalid, XHTML document served as an application of XML will be 'used' by an XHTML-compliant user agent. The result of the invalidity depends on the user agent, just as it does with invalid HTML.

    But if the XHTML document is malformed, it will not survive the parsing phase if served as real XHTML. And if it's not served as real XHTML, it isn't XHTML.

    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    and i don't know if every xml document out there has an <html> tag in it
    Of course not. No more than everything that has a colour is pink.

    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    xhtml declares to be xml, but nobody cares much if it is so.
    Oh, those who actually use XHTML do. But the 99.999% who use HTML with XHTML-style syntax because they think it's 'cool' or 'easier to read' or for other emotional purposes don't. Many would probably tear their hair out in frustration if their code was handled like real XHTML, because it's utterly unsuitable for hand-coded web sites.
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  10. #135
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutisticCuckoo View Post
    because it's utterly unsuitable for hand-coded web sites.
    No - for a programmer it is a far better alternative for hand coding than HTML is since you can far more easily detect errors (since many errors will result in the page not being able to display making it instantly obvious that there is an error there).
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  11. #136
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    Quote Originally Posted by AutisticCuckoo View Post
    XHTML is an application of XML. Period.
    obviously. my single point was that svg, for example, is an application of xml. but svg can only be used when xml sound. by comparison, xhtml not so much of an xml application, outside specs concern. exceptions are only to confirm the rule.

    Quote Originally Posted by AutisticCuckoo View Post
    If served as image/png it is perceived as a broken PNG image.
    good one. i like it! of course, what we do wrong, doesn't invalidate concepts like xhtml, xml or anything else for that matter, even png. but when it's common practice to have dual meaning and use, i believe it falls in a different category: frankenstein web. this is why i started this thread in the first place: right labels for wrong ways.

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    Quote Originally Posted by felgall View Post
    No - for a programmer it is a far better alternative for hand coding than HTML is since you can far more easily detect errors (since many errors will result in the page not being able to display making it instantly obvious that there is an error there).
    a far better alternative is to use something a little better than notepad in order to take control of your code i'm not suggesting wysiwyg ides.

  13. #138
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    a far better alternative is to use something a little better than notepad in order to take control of your code
    Ah, a fellow vi-user! Welcome! : )

    Felgall's actually talking about parsing errors showing up right away. Browsers will always try to show a crappy HTML page even when it's so bad they can't. Real XHTML, though, will sit down, do nothing, and hold its breath until it passes out because no way, no how will anything show until you fix that error.

    Appeals to me as well. I want my programs to do that. Why wouldn't I want my web pages to do that? (Yes, I read Mark Pilgrim's really weird "but what if the world explodes and you have a >/ user comment??" story, but since my sites don't have crap like tainted user-added comments, I can still dream, can't I?)

  14. #139
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stomme poes View Post
    Felgall's actually talking about parsing errors showing up right away. Browsers will always try to show a crappy HTML page even when it's so bad they can't. Real XHTML, though, will sit down, do nothing, and hold its breath until it passes out because no way, no how will anything show until you fix that error.
    it's a way of doing things. i prefer though not to wait till parsing, and nail most problems with the markup at editing time. a text editor with some html coding helpers and with a live preview option, i think would be the best of both worlds. something like the developer tools browsers have to offer.

  15. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    it's a way of doing things. i prefer though not to wait till parsing, and nail most problems with the markup at editing time. a text editor with some html coding helpers and with a live preview option, i think would be the best of both worlds. something like the developer tools browsers have to offer.
    It's not all that difficult to switch through the various browsers, and it's is certainly more accurate than depending on a built-in rendering.

    Coding helpers are helpful if they use keyboard shortcuts. If you have to go to a dropdown menu or to a mouse, it only slows you down. It is also helpful if you are able to edit the helper code to reflect your coding needs. E.G., the guy who wrote the Emacs html helper mode included attribute inserts I seldom use, while not inserting some that I use regularly. It was trivial to open the helper mode file and edit the Lisp code to suit my needs.

    An editor such as Emacs can validate markup on the fly. Others may also; I'm just not familiar with all the offerings.

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  16. #141
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    i prefer though not to wait till parsing, and nail most problems with the markup at editing time.
    So do I but having the rest of the parsing errors picked up by the browser is an improvement as it would pick up the ones that the colour coding and built in validator in the editor manage to miss. It also would act as a confirmation that the tags are well formed.
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    no argument here live edit from the browser is one thing i like firebug for.

  18. #143
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    This thread has certainly been lively since I last visited. I think the problem with XHTML is that the majority of people who build for the web have problems with semantics and due to ignorance or whatever other reason they care to pick they encounter serious issues understanding what is the right element for the right task. Within HTML the effects of this are limited because there is a strict set of elements that can be used and therefore the restricted vocabulary allows people to learn the language with relative ease. With XHTML which as an application of XML allows for greater extensibility and custom elements (such as embedding RDF within the document) the ultimate effect will be end-users who have problems reading the complex specifications and WYSIWYG editors who can't tell the contextual value of code will just end up abusing the intended meaning to simply get the job done. Much of XML is built upon conventions where a specification (sub) is released (like RSS) and people choose to follow the defined elements to construct a logical and readable document, but where most people have problems differentiating between rel and rev attributes (or even what alt is), giving them such a loose array of applicable definitions to choose between will ultimately lead them to violating semantics and thereby having conventions dictate the grammar rather than the intended usage (which will just lead to confusion). Shame really, I was a huge fan of XHTML 2.0 and if support was great enough, I would have happily used it in preference to HTML5 (which IMO is a largely massacred version of HTML4)

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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    [...] the ultimate effect will be [...] abusing the intended meaning to simply get the job done.
    and in my opinion that started since html 4.01, where developers chose a DTD over a concept and buried strict in a murky n-tuple meaning. for any markup to pass as strict, a judge and a jury should have ruled, with bail denied, and the markup kept in a transitional lock-up guilty until proven innocent

    Quote Originally Posted by AlexDawson View Post
    [...] but where most people have problems differentiating between rel and rev attributes (or even what alt is), giving them such a loose array of applicable definitions to choose between will ultimately lead them to violating semantics and thereby having conventions dictate the grammar rather than the intended usage (which will just lead to confusion).
    does this affects xhtml? no, not really. xhtml has an increased usability, but i don't believe we can put semantic and xhtml in the same phrase. xhtml cannot imply semantic when it can employ new undocumented (non-universal available descriptions) elements. specs for html change, even if it takes decades. so will custom xhtml DTDs, and these ones faster than the speed of light; after all, not much thought is put when creating them, the main concern is functionality. who will keep track of all the changes in these custom DTDs? or better yet, how, when looking for a viable, long term solution.

  20. #145
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    for any markup to pass as strict, a judge and a jury should have ruled,
    Not at all. You have it backwards. To pass as strict a web page needs to merely NOT use any deprecated tags. That it passes says nothing about whether it is semantically meaningful or not - that is what is a completely separate issue that needs to go before a human judge to determine (since that is what is beyond the scope of the computer to be able to determine).
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  21. #146
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    this is where we disagree the most deprecated tags are only a consequence (one of the many) of html 4.01 strict, which stated the (further, better) separation of presentation from content. it's one way to look at it, also

    and i believe we've gone over this matter before: a page it's strict when it's strict, not when it validates as strict. validators will never be right, semantics or otherwise, and i believe that is what you meant when you said "To pass as strict": to pass a validator's test. which also needs to be manually assisted if you want the results to be right.

    i see no other way, semantics or otherwise:
    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    for any markup to pass as strict, a judge and a jury should have ruled, with bail denied, and the markup kept in a transitional lock-up guilty until proven innocent

  22. #147
    Programming Since 1978 silver trophybronze trophy felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noonnope View Post
    and i believe we've gone over this matter before: a page it's strict when it's strict, not when it validates as strict. validators will never be right,
    The validator is able to detect about 95&#37; of what strict means though.

    The few things it can't detect relate to the few restrictions that cannot be specified in the SGML but which instead need to be specified in the associated documentation - such as only inline tags being allowed inside a <del> tag when that del tag is inline.

    Semantics has nothing whatever to do wit whether it is strict or not. A web page can be HTML 4.01 strict and bes tables for layout and div and span tags for everything else with no semantically correct tags in sight.

    It isn't a matter of whether you agree or not - the definition of html 4.01 steict is extremely precise as to exactly what it is and semantics has nothing to do with it. The HTML 4.01 strict definition simply provides a list of which tags browsers need to be able to accept and which are allowed to be nested within what.

    Semantics is an entirely separate layer that has nothing to do with which doctype you are using at all. Attempting to supply a semantic meaning to a doctype is at far worse than using tables for layout since at least with using tables for layout the page can be using the correct doctype whereas if you change the doctype based on semantics then your entire page is then wrong because it doesn't match the doctype.
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    the definition of html 4.01 it is not "extremely precise". you are probably referring to a file called strict.dtd when you mean that, and that is only a file.

    we are not really talking about the doctype (DTD declaration) here, but about the use of it to flag a markup. doctype declaration is useless, unless you want the trigger for ie quirks or standard mode. you can put any doctype declaration you want, it's not affecting your markup a bit: it's still corect/incorect. and a validator it's not a reliable way to check a markup, unless you're shooting for an free upgrade in a paycheck

    html 4.01 spec is the starting point for all this discussions. it provides a set of elements ( like p, h1, a) and a set of rules to use them. of course, from these, in short, for syntax, things like that strict.dtd file are emerging, but you cannot take strict.dtd file and reconstruct what html 4.01 strict means (nor doctype declaration, for that matter).

    as far as the semantics go: if you don't follow those rules, you are constructing bad markup. like in the human language: you have nouns, verbs (language elements) that describe by their syntax rules a meaning, a semantic. you can't really dissolute one from the other. if you use bad syntax you have bad semantics.

    and what you are calling semantics as an entirely separate layer, that has a different name: author semantic, which is something completely different.

    again, a doctype doesn't say anything about a page. also, it's no use for validation; validation by validators has little meaning. but a doctype declaration can be a hint, when used properly. and that means no shiny icon, i'm afraid

    Quote Originally Posted by felgall View Post
    Attempting to supply a semantic meaning to a doctype is at far worse than using tables for layout since at least with using tables for layout the page can be using the correct doctype whereas if you change the doctype based on semantics then your entire page is then wrong because it doesn't match the doctype.
    so a doctype declaration beats specs, beats rules, beats everything. and i thought a doctype is useless unless a trigger or a poor validation sign. i can get away with everything in my markup as long as i respect some empty incomplete rules. well, that would allow me to call my self a web programmer in a couple of month, if i start from scratch and i would be able to produce compliant html 4.01 strict pages since the day 1, even though i might not be sure what that means or even on what planet i am, for that matter! but hey, if i know that a scalpel is for surgery, i might start doing well and get me a ferrary with my surgeon aside gains. it only takes that much!


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