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Re: [Lynx-dev] A patch for lynx.

From: David Woolley
Subject: Re: [Lynx-dev] A patch for lynx.
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2007 07:25:42 +0100
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20070221)

Zephaniah E. Hull wrote:

To verify here, is the / actually legal in any version of HTML or XHTML
that does not consider this a closing statement?

It has a meaning in SGML, I can't remember if the relevant
option is turned off for HTML, but, in general, it is only
generic tools that recognize it properly as real life HTML
parsers aren't SGML compliant and it is this non-compliance that
the Appendix C rules rely on.

If I remember correctly, correct usage would be:

<title/This is the title/

I think it may be an option that is turned off in the SGML
specification file for HTML.  The ">" would be treated as
a normal character.

My view is that the only legitimate reason for handling XML
syntax is that you are implmenting XHTML properly.  That means
- offereing to accept application/xhtml+xml;
- only applying the rules if the contents is actually labelled
  as such;
- using the XML default character set and requiring XML processing
  instructions to override it;
- aborting the document on the first well formedness error (incidentally
  much of the XML type syntax in web pages would result in this
  behaviour if served in non-compatibiity mode!).

As Lynx doesn't support scripting or style sheets, the required use
of CDATA sections for inline ones may not be such an issue and
the document object model changes (e.g. missing TBODY is really
missing) may not matter.

Microsoft have said that this was too difficult to do in IE7 and
have decided not to do it, rather than do it and get it wrong. (One of the arguments against the Appendix C concession is that it will become impossible for browsers to comply with the reject not-well formed content rule because so much XHTML is only being used on IE and is therefore people are producing a lot of it with well-formedness errors.)

If other browsers are making a last gasp effort to accept even more invalid content before they start accepting XHTML and therefore rejecting on well-formedness errors, they are being very cynical. If it is possible to do error recovery in Lynx that doesn't follow this path,]
It will be much better.

As a first thing, one should do a much more careful bugwise compatibility reverse engineering job to see whether, for
example, a missing </script> is handled correctly even when
<script src=.... /> is not used.

I'll also repeat that the only excuse that many people give for
serving XHTML asd text/html is that the XHTML syntax rules are
tighter (they aren't - HTML just has more convenience rules).
As such, if they then use it wrongly, they should receive complaints.

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