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Archive for October, 2011

WHATWG Weekly: Now it’s <time> for <data>

Saturday, October 29th, 2011

Revision 6695 made HTML attribute values match in a case-sensitive manner as far as Selectors are concerned. This approach was favored over having a hardcoded list of HTML attributes whose values had to be matched case-insensitively. Revision 6701 removed selectedOptions from the input element, a vestige from the Web Forms 2.0 era. Welcome to the weekend (jetlag) edition of the WHATWG Weekly.

New element: data

The major news today is that since revision 6783 we have a new element: data. We also lost an element: time. The data element represents a piece of human readable data that is made machine readable by its required value attribute. It can either be used for Microdata or as an element to help out scripts, in similar fashion to the data-* attributes.

The reason the time element has been replaced is that its primary use has been for marking up machine-readable times and dates in Microdata vocabularies, which is a use that has been requested for many other types of data as well (currency, numbers, location). The data element addresses these use cases in a generic fashion and provides yet another hook for scripts to play with.

The same revision also removed the HTML-to-Atom conversion algorithm. Authors can use a Microdata vocabulary instead.

WebVTT update

As reported earlier Simon Pieters did some research into timestamps. He now complemented that with research into separating cues. As a result of this parsing of WebVTT was made more forgiving. Newline handling was made more predictable.

Yours truly wrote a WebVTT parser and a Live WebVTT Validator in JavaScript so you can validate your captioning files.

Other changes

There were many other changes of significance:

And even more than those, which you can look up for yourself by going through the HTML5 tracker or by following us on twitter: @WHATWG.

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WHATWG Weekly: Fullscreen

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

Should we introduce an isWhiteSpace attribute for Text nodes, and if we do, what would you use it for? Anyway, WHATWG Weekly, brief one this week.


The big news last week was renewed activity on Gecko:FullScreenAPI, a proposal by Robert O'Callahan to make fullscreen work for the platform. Yours truly made an initial attempt at formalizing it in terms of the DOM and HTML as Fullscreen.

The details of Fullscreen are currently being discussed on the WHATWG mailing list and IRC channel. As a reminder, both are open for anyone to join.

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WHATWG Weekly: Permanently Binding Decorative Components

Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

Simon Pieters posted SRT timestamp research. Ryosuke Niwa updated his UndoManager and DOM Transaction proposal. This is the WHATWG Weekly.

HTML standard

In revision 6657 Ian Hickson removed the text/html-sandboxed MIME type from the HTML standard. The goal of the MIME type was to allow untrusted content to be hosted on the same origin as trusted content. However, given that older versions of Internet Explorer treat content with the text/html-sandboxed MIME type as content with a text/html MIME type instead of as downloadable content, the text/html-sandboxed MIME type did not meet its design goals.

Revision 6668 introduces the ability for the itemtype attribute to take more than one value. This makes it easier to mark up items in Microdata that share a vocabulary.


On the WebApps WG mailing list Ian Hickson outlined his current views on bindings. In particular the separation between bindings that expose an API (permanent bindings) and bindings that are stylistic (decorator bindings). Meanwhile Roland Steiner has updated the Component Model Discussion wiki page with the open issues, giving a good overview over where we are at this point.

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WHATWG Weekly: Simplifying the DOM

Wednesday, October 5th, 2011

Odin Hørthe Omdal brought up cross-origin image loading via CORS as Gecko and WebKit have different implementations. Julien Chaffraix considers the relation between the disabled and sheet IDL attributes of the link element to be insufficiently defined. Welcome to the first WHATWG Weekly this October.

HTML is the new HTML

In an attempt to further simplify our efforts, Web Applications 1.0 and its HTML subset have been merged into what is now known as HTML. Redirects are in place, so unless you were writing a thesis on the subject (sorry, FlorianX!), everything should be in order.

Easier element creation

Anne van Kesteren [yes, that's me] suggested a simplified way of creating elements. Basically representing elements and their descendants as an array structure. Combined with the proposal from Ojan Vafai on new DOM manipulation methods this has the potential to drastically improve working with the DOM. You are encouraged to share your thoughts on the matter on the www-dom mailing list.

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