[thelist] xhtml vs html

Tom Dell'Aringa pixelmech at yahoo.com
Tue Jul 22 22:21:11 CDT 2003

--- Paul Bennett <paul at teltest.com> wrote:
> I was all happy and feeling good about myself coding merrily away
> in xhtml strict when I read this (referenced from one of .jeffs 
> posts I  believe):
> "Sending xhtml as text/html is bad"
> http://www.hixie.ch/advocacy/xhtml
>  Now I am having difficulty sleeping and when coworkers question my
> dogmatic adherence to web and accessibility standards I have lost
> some of the religious zeal I once had in expounding upon their 
> virtues (the standards, not my coworkers).
> I wonder if the big brains on the list can offer their knowledge:
> (1) Why would the w3c propose xhtml as the-next-big-thing(tm) if mr
> hixie claims it is so nasty sent as html

I'm a small brain, but I'll try to help.

1 - The benefits of XHTML are far wider than a problem with sending
said document as a specific mime type. Solution? Don't do it. You
don't need to yet, just like the XML prolog can be left out. Zeldman
covers all of this in his new book and I would suggest reading it.

> (2) Are his claims valid? - IE (as in "for example", not "Internet 
> Explorer") , would the carnage he implies actually ensue if / when
> xhtml is sent as xhtml/xml?

I do believe carnage ensues. In my view this is a minor issue.
Sending the document that way is not necessary at all.

> (3) If the w3c don't know what is going on, who does?

Hard to say right now as the whole browser market is in a bit of a
stale mode. When browsers are written that can correctly work with
the mime type, then we can do it. It's not that the W3C doesn't know
whats going on, its that the browsers just can't handle it.

> (4) Are sleeping pills the answer?

Only short term. :)

Remember, standards, which includes XHTML but also CSS and the DOM as
well as ECMAscript, have already shown themselves to be "worth it."
Just ask ESPN, Wired, the PGA Tour and lots of other pretty big name
companies who are already benefitting.



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