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Re: Re: XML5

  • From: Jirka Kosek <jirka@kosek.cz>
  • To: Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>
  • Date: Thu, 16 Dec 2010 22:24:03 +0100

Re:  Re: XML5
Henri Sivonen wrote:

> You get more proprietary extensibility with XML (which lets
> enterprise vendors say they do XML to appear to use a standard while
> they lock the customer in on the vocabulary level). However, people
> really shouldn't be sending content using proprietary vocabularies on
> the Web. 

Just for clarification. By proprietary vocabulary you mean any
vocabulary except (X)HTML, SVG, MathML and ARIA?

> Even if you style it with CSS to present it,

Today's CSS features are usually too insufficient to present XML in
useful way -- no support for creating links, images, adding table
headers, ... So you have to use XSLT (or Javascript) to turn XML into
HTML markup with all AT bells and whistles.

> the browser
> won't know its semantics and can't expose the content properly to
> assistive technologies for example.

If XML is going to be rendered directly by CSS, then I think it is a
flaw of CSS of not allowing adding something like ARIA with style or
design flaw of browsers or ARIA that it uses fixed prefix aria- instead
of aria: namespaced attributes which can be injected into XML content.

> So when the vocabularies that browsers have built-in awareness for
> (in the sense of using them in document trees that are displayed in a
> browsing context) now work in text/html, a big reason to use XML is
> removed. This leaves less reason to use XML on the Web, which makes
> it less worthwhile to make XML more suitable for use on the Web.

I still don't know why it shouldn't be possible to insert AnyXML
fragments into HTML5 page and assign it styling/behaviour using
CSS/XSLT/JavaScript/XBL2. This would be open platform in my mind. Why I
couldn't insert MusicXML fragment into middle of page, let attached
Javascript file render it on canvas (or to SVG) and still have
possibility to copy'n'paste this MusicXML into my music software in
order to play it or modify melody? You can find such examples in many

Of course I can do it with XHTML. But preventing this in HTML5 means
that adoption of new technologies in HTML in a future will be much more
complicated. It seems that 99% of web developers are now happy and
saturated with SVG and MathML added into HTML. But we don't know (at
least I don't know it) what kind of vocabularies will be needed in 10 years.


  Jirka Kosek      e-mail: jirka@kosek.cz      http://xmlguru.cz
       Professional XML consulting and training services
  DocBook customization, custom XSLT/XSL-FO document processing
 OASIS DocBook TC member, W3C Invited Expert, ISO JTC1/SC34 member

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