Please leave your sense of logic at the door, thanks!

WHATWG Weekly: Web Notifications

by Anne van Kesteren in Weekly Review

Much sleep has not been had, so if you read something silly, it might just be me. There’s good news too, Shelley Powers volunteered to start writing the WHATWG Weekly starting March 21. Her main interest is HTML, so you might need to pester her on twitter (@shelleypowers) or email ([email protected]) to get other things covered.

Web Notifications

Robert O'Callahan once wrote a great post on The Essence Of Web Applications. Nonetheless, there are some features desktop applications have that would be quite useful in the web application space. The Web Notifications work is one part of that puzzle, bringing an API to the web to show simple application status messages to the user. This way e.g. Yahoo! Mail can notify you of incoming email even when your browser is running in the background or Yahoo! Mail is not the active tab.

Purging Link Relationships

Per a decision of the W3C HTML WG the up, last, index, first, and their synonym link relationships (values for the rel attribute) have been dropped. Since archives was similar to index that has been removed too for consistency. These relationships were never that useful to begin with so I suppose it is nice that authors no longer have to worry about them. I.e. either worry whether to add them at all or whether they would be appropriate in a certain situation.


4 Responses to “WHATWG Weekly: Web Notifications”

  1. Give me my index, up, last and first links back. It’s not that they cost you anything.

  2. I haven’t had time to read whatwg@ regularly in awhile, so I wanted to say thanks for doing this — I’d have missed the multiple-globals discussion migration (metastasization?) to it without hearing of it here. (I’m initially skeptical of his proposal that WebIDL is the right place to specify multiple globals work in the language, but since I’ve done no more than read the initial email you link I certainly haven’t given the idea fair consideration yet.)

  3. Hello,
    This is sad.
    Before HTML5, there was a pretty good consensus and a number of largely deployed implementations of these useful link relationships (think e.g. accessibility), with long history since at least HTML 3.2:
    The notions have been apparently mixed-up by the editor(s), leading to a mess (for instance erroneously attempting to put “index” and “contents” as synonyms of “top”), and throwing the baby with the bath was maybe the simple way out (and maybe the intended result, as I suspect after having seen the animosity of some people on the matter).
    I think it is a pity to reduce this heritage, and editors should remember the importance of relationships between documents in the original HTTP/HTML vision.
    Personally, I use these features constantly, and even on this very blog (, I make use of them (thanks to their nice implementation in my Opera browser).
    I hope this feature will be able to make it through somehow, maybe during later reviews…
    Best regards

  4. After having received some good explanations from Karl, the situation for link-rel may not be that bad after all (from the viewpoint that I defended in my previous comment), if it turns out as follows: External repositories with larger collections of values (including the removed ones) may instead be relied upon in the future, such as
    Here are the minutes of the decisions: