Why does the default theme use XHTML?

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hm2k
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by hm2k »

Here's what the experts are saying...
Needless to say we're currently in a position where there's no advantages over using XHTML, only confusion, so why's it used by default? Was any consideration given?

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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by Erik Frèrejean »

I haven't red the articles that you linked, but my first thought by looking at the dates is: We're living in 2008 and not '02 :o!
So somehow I have the feeling that the issues addressed in those articles are fixed.
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by hm2k »

Erik Frèrejean wrote:I haven't red the articles that you linked, but my first thought by looking at the dates is: We're living in 2008 and not '02 :o!
So somehow I have the feeling that the issues addressed in those articles are fixed.
Heh, this is just it, they haven't, yet people are just going ahead and using it making these assumptions that because it's 6 years later, automatically things have already been "fixed".

Fact is, even if it was "fixed", you'd still have to consider backwards compatibility for older browsers.

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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by Erik Frèrejean »

But for how far are you going to stay backwards compatible. Do you quit using css because IE 5 doesn't support it well?
I'm personally always try to use the latest techniques (xhtml/php5/etc), because I'm interested in it and I think there is only one way and that is forward. (I use webkit as primary browser for a reason!)
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by hm2k »

The difference is that there's no benefit using XHTML 1.0 over HTML 4.01, there is in using CSS, but the more compatible the better really. Besides, anything lower than IE6 is now considered a write off, however IE6 and above are still very widely used.

I guess we won't really know what's going to happen until XHTML 2.0 and HTML5 are released...

Meanwhile, I'm interested to know who made the decision to use XHTML and why...?

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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by thecoalman »

iWisdom wrote:None of those sources are anyone that'd be considered an "expert",.
Did you happen to look at the resume of the first link posted or just decide that based on the URL and the plain text document?

http://ian.hixie.ch/career/resume.html

I don't know what your criteria for expert is but you'd be hard pressed to find someone with better credentials.
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by SamG »

hm2k wrote:The difference is that there's no benefit using XHTML 1.0 over HTML 4.01, there is in using CSS, but the more compatible the better really.
I appreciate you citing authorities. Naturally, they should be heard. But you come to an OSS project essentially criticizing a decision to follow current technical standards adopted by the de facto standards body for the Web, You can demonstrate not one real world, practical benefit to using HTML 4.01, not one. CSS, if anything, is measureably more backwards incompatible than XHTML 1.0 (especially given that we have yet to see any demonstration of a practical difference between an HTML 4.01 document and an XHTML 1.0 document), yet I see no criticism of the decision to use CSS at all. I continue to think this is an academic argument, in all senses of that word.
hm2k wrote:I guess we won't really know what's going to happen until XHTML 2.0 and HTML5 are released.
In an XML world, where XML has been adopted and is becoming entrenched in places outside the Web, it would be a bad decision on technical grounds for Web authors to embrace "HTML 5." There is no technical reason, none whatsoever, for the Web to avoid delivering XML reliably, and for Web clients to avoid XHTML. At best, your arguments encourage the more rapid use of XML and XSLT over XHTML. But given the benefits of an XML-ized canned DTD, we as Web authors have everything to gain and nothing to lose by encouraging the shift toward XML on the Web in whatever way we can, short of disenfranchising end users. Since phpBB has done no such thing with the decision to follow published, open standards as closely as possible, I'm missing the real world problem here. Your cited authorities are welcome to stop by here and explain it if they wish, of course, since this is a large OSS project and a reasonable venue for productive discussion.
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by hm2k »

SamG wrote:You can demonstrate not one real world, practical benefit to using HTML 4.01, not one.
Likewise, you can not demonstrate one real world, practical benefit to using XHTML 1.0, not one.

Blindly upgrading is a stupid concept.

Where are the expert articles that say XHTML is a "de facto standard"?

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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by Kellanved »

XHTML's syntax is easily enforced and is especially well-suited for generated web pages (like the ones phpBB produces), as the requirement of having closed tags forces the blocks into more readable structures.
In short: the strict DTD is a big plus.
Also, with the "semantic" web, it's easier for other applications to work with the clean XHTML.

And if browsers (ahem, one certain browser), learn to use it properly, then the XHTML tricks like SVG et al will get interesting.
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by SamG »

I'm sorry, but there are several, well-known, concrete benefits to using XML on the Web. SVG (mentioned as I typed by Kellanved, I see) is one. Open DTDs are another. XML data sharing is another. I could go on and on, but I won't.

I didn't say XHTML was the de facto standard (though I'm willing to say that). I said something about a de facto standards body. Two different things. That body, by the way, has been highly regarded long enough and just chocked full of people much brighter than me that they were able to craft the HTML 4.01 specification and make it stick against the pressure of those web authors who weren't at all interested in separating content and presentation.
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by hm2k »

As far as I am aware you can include SVG files in HTML like normal image files. XHTML has nothing to do with it. The only time it does is down to in-line SVG. Yet none of this matters because of compatibility issues, which just adds to a case against XHTML really.

You can have strict semantic HTML, after all many browsers just read XHTML as bad HTML anyway. I don't see how XHTML is any more suited than regular HTML...?

That "de facto standards body" is called the w3c, let's not just make things up here.

...and still not one real world, practical benefit to use XHTML.

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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by SamG »

SVG isn't within HTML. It's outside HTML, as it were. Not so with XML. In other words, there is no way to craft the SVG specification without using XML (or something like it).
hm2k wrote:That "de facto standards body" is called the w3c, let's not just make things up here.

...and still not one real world, practical benefit to use XHTML.
Exactly what did I make up? The W3C isn't official, as critics of XHTML frequently point out. It is advisory only.

As for real world examples of the benefits of XML, you seem to be not understanding. XHTML is an XML application. It inherits the benefits of XML. So to speak of the real world benefits of XML (and several practical ones have been mentioned throughout this topic) is to speak of the benefits of XHTML. It really is you who have yet to mention even a single benefit of HTML beyond backward compatibility, and since you haven't shown a single concrete example of an XHTML backward compatibility problem with any browser in current use, I'm really at a loss to see what it is you're trying to say.
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by hm2k »

SamG wrote:SVG isn't within HTML. It's outside HTML, as it were. Not so with XML. In other words, there is no way to craft the SVG specification without using XML (or something like it).
Nothing to do with XHTML then.
SamG wrote:The W3C isn't official, as critics of XHTML frequently point out. It is advisory only.
A bit like the law. Speed limits are advisory only, providing there's nothing checking it. :p
SamG wrote:As for real world examples of the benefits of XML, you seem to be not understanding. XHTML is an XML application. It inherits the benefits of XML. So to speak of the real world benefits of XML (and several practical ones have been mentioned throughout this topic) is to speak of the benefits of XHTML. It really is you who have yet to mention even a single benefit of HTML beyond backward compatibility, and since you haven't shown a single concrete example of an XHTML backward compatibility problem with any browser in current use, I'm really at a loss to see what it is you're trying to say.
It's only an XML application if it's served as that, but it's served as "text/html", so it's not, it's bad HTML.

And if you try and serve XHTML as it should be, IE won't render it. This is the problem with XHTML.

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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by Phil »

hm2k wrote:
SamG wrote:SVG isn't within HTML. It's outside HTML, as it were. Not so with XML. In other words, there is no way to craft the SVG specification without using XML (or something like it).
Nothing to do with XHTML then.
Actually, it has a lot to do with it. You wanted real-world benefits, you have one. If you claim that thi s isn't a benefit, then speak for yourself -- I'd very much like to have this ability.
SamG wrote:The W3C isn't official, as critics of XHTML frequently point out. It is advisory only.
A bit like the law. Speed limits are advisory only, providing there's nothing checking it. :p
No, not at all. The law is... well, the law. They are rules. They are strictly enforced. If you've ever read the actual standards, you'll see that they're not requirements -- just guidelines. It's why some browsers (e.g. IE) don't have to follow them.
SamG wrote:As for real world examples of the benefits of XML, you seem to be not understanding. XHTML is an XML application. It inherits the benefits of XML. So to speak of the real world benefits of XML (and several practical ones have been mentioned throughout this topic) is to speak of the benefits of XHTML. It really is you who have yet to mention even a single benefit of HTML beyond backward compatibility, and since you haven't shown a single concrete example of an XHTML backward compatibility problem with any browser in current use, I'm really at a loss to see what it is you're trying to say.
It's only an XML application if it's served as that, but it's served as "text/html", so it's not, it's bad HTML.
Actually, some browsers parse XHTML differently than HTML based on the doctype. So no, it's
XHTML.
And if you try and serve XHTML as it should be, IE won't render it. This is the problem with XHTML.
That's like saying that since IE6 doesn't fully support CSS, we shouldn't use it.
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Re: Why does the default theme use XHTML?

Post by hm2k »

This is starting to get too opinionated now...

Let's face it, there's no experts advising you to use XHTML 1.0, so why use it, when there's experts advising you to use HTML 4.01?

Let's talk facts.

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