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  1. #16
    Master Coder felgall's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rnd me View Post
    A lot of mistake were made in HTML4 which necessitated HTML5. You can call it backtracking or learning from experience, depending on your outlook, but lets not advocate for outmoded HTML4 concepts anymore. HTML5 is here to stay, like it or not.
    I disagree about there being mistakes in HTML 4. The only issue is that Internet Explorer didn't fully support HTML 4 until IE8 was released and didn't support XHTML 1.0 until IE9 and so people continued to use HTML 3.2 (or HTML 4 transitional which is HTML 3.2 with the new HTML 4 tags added)

    A lot of the backtracking was done simply to support these web pages that still follow HTML 3.2 (as about 90% of the web does). Tags and attributes done away with in HTML 4 were not reintroduced in HTML 5 because using them is a good idea, they were reintroduced because if they were completely done away with as HTML 4 proposed then it would break 90% of the web. It is also interesting that some tags have been reintroduced just after they became unnecessary (eg. embed which was only ever needed for Netscape 4 but which made it possible to code for both IE6 and other browsers without using conditional comments).

    Many of the reintroduced tags in HTML 5 are also only supposed to be used by WYSIWYG web editors that are unable to handle proper styling of the page using CSS. When writing the HTML yourself you can easily do everything you need with the HTML 4 tags and some of the new HTML 5 tags without needing to use any of the reintroduced ones - and get a more flexible page as a result.

    Using many of these reintroduced tags and attributes blocks some visitors from being able to use the particular web page.

    There are a number of useful tags that have been introduced for the first time in HTML 5 so HTML 5 is an imrovement on HTML 4 in some ways. For example the video and audio tags and most of the new form fields.

    One difficulty with HTML 5 is that as it doesn't follow the standards for defining markup languages you have to wonder about how effective it will ever be as a standard. Why should people follow a standard that isn't defined in accordance with the standards for defining that type of standard. As it doesn't follow the SGML markup standard it doesn't have an SGML doctype and so validating becomes meaningless. At least XHTML5 is still defined as XML and XML is defined using SGML so the same issue doesn''t apply to XHTML5.

    Presumably HTML 6 will get rid of all the unnecessary tags that HTML 5 has added back in to support the 90% who still write HTML 3.2 or possibly there will be a split with future versions of HTML 5 continuing to support all the obsolete and unnecessary tags that people continue to use while XHTML 5 development cleans things up again by geting rid of all those unnecessary tags that HTML 4 got rid of. At least this would be consistent with what has been done with JavaScript where there are now two versions with which version the browser should use being determined by the presence or absence of a new command.

    About the only thing that is certain is that it will finally be possible to use XHTML 1.0 before it becomes possible to use (X)HTML 5 given that HTML 5 is not yet a standard and so current browsers do not fully support it whereas the only browser still in common use that doesn't support XHTML 1.0 is IE8.
    Last edited by felgall; 01-21-2014 at 09:24 PM.
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  2. #17
    Senior Coder rnd me's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by felgall View Post
    Using many of these reintroduced tags and attributes blocks some visitors from being able to use the particular web page.
    can we please get an example or two? if a browser supports html5, as all of them have for some time now, the tag/attrib will work as expected. If the browser was made before HTML5 came out, then unknown tags will show as SPANs, and unknown attribs will be ignored.

    as an aside:
    the HTML5 committee felt that xml or especially sgml compliance was not needed or really even desirable. XML is far too strict to be a good document delivery medium. One un-escaped special character and the whole page goes kaboom! A good medium tolerates errors and noise in the signal, and that's exactly what html5 makes even more possible than past versions. By specing a simple grammar and defining how to fail, malformed markup quirks are thing of the past. along with eliminating dependencies on other specifications, this tradeoff makes the web the web more consistent and allows a simplified spelling-out of error routines that would be very complex should XML/SGML compliance enter the picture.
    Last edited by rnd me; 01-22-2014 at 02:09 AM.
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