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Standards that Matter are Standards that Ship

HTML5 defines a <video> element.

There is an experimental build of Opera that supports Ogg Theora.  There is an experimental build of Firefox that only supports video/ogg.  The nightly builds of webkit support all the formats that are supported by QuickTime (which, by default, does not support Ogg Theora).  Nokia apparently felt that the mealy mouthed “User agents should support Ogg Theora video and Ogg Vorbis audio” that was in the working draft at the time was too troublesome, and requested that the wording be deleted.  Previously, Nokia wrote a position paper, which states:

Considering our requirements, we believe the widespread use of technically competitive, but not necessarily “free” open standards, such as H.264 for video and AAC for audio, would serve the community best. This would be fully aligned with the business model dominant in the digital video ecosystem.

Microsoft continues to be AWOL.

Ian temporarily removed the requirement, which generated a few messages in the W3C working group and a lot more messages on the WHATWG mailing list.

Meanwhile, Jackass 2.5 is available exclusively on SilverLight.

Fundamentally, Microsoft’s strategy is sound.  Ignore standards that you find inconvenient, and focus on producing and enabling the production of content people want.  While my humble site can’t compete with the likes of Jackass 2.5, I do have a few people who follow my site.  I’ve switched my front page to HTML5 despite the fact that this means that MSIE7 will therefore ignore virtually all CSS.  The page validates modulo an acknowledged bug in the validator.

Perhaps if a few more HTML5 advocates did the same, people would eventually take notice.

P.S.  If I had one request to the W3C and WHATWG working groups, it would be to ask that Ian’s conclusions about why a comprehensive spec later vs shipping something smaller sooner be revisited.


Hello, Sam.  Some quick questions about your HTML5-ization.  I’ve been loathe to use the new sectioning tags because of the CSS issues involved.  It appears you skirt that by serving as XHTML?  Does that keep unknown elements in the DOM?

Posted by Michael Terry at

It’s sad that we’re having this conversation at the time when people think of themselves primarily as consumers of video.

Linux was only usable by the most talented of tinkerers for years.How long ago did people use Firefox only because it had the potential to be a better browser than IE?  How long ago was it that the use of an open source CMS or blog was crazy talk rather than standard operating practice?

And yet how are we ever going to have a range of open source web-platforms for sharing, editing, remixing, “mashing-up”, transcoding and otherwise working with video without support for ogg/theora? But people focus only on being able to watch “Ow, my balls 2.5”.

A big shout out to Wikipedia for flying the flag for Ogg Vorbis and Theora.

Incidentally, I would love for the popular answer to IE support for Ogg/Theora to be Java based, maybe the new JavaFX thingy. There’s something sweet about the blowback for Microsoft pushing for .NET over web standards being even more downloads of Java. Anyone think that Sun is interested in getting involved in this fight?

Posted by david at

We can ship a comprehensive spec today. Isn’t that the best of both worlds?

Posted by Ian Hickson at

We can ship a comprehensive spec today. Isn’t that the best of both worlds?

If you mean a spec that says either “Editor’s Draft” or “Working Draft” on top, and one in which requirements come and go in response to challenges by Nokia and/or Apple?

Um, no.

Posted by Sam Ruby at

I’ve been loathe to use the new sectioning tags because of the CSS issues involved.  It appears you skirt that by serving as XHTML?  Does that keep unknown elements in the DOM?

If you are referring to Firefox Bug 311366; that bug does not affect content served as application/xhtml+xml.

Posted by Sam Ruby at

<blockquote><p> one in which requirements come and go in response to challenges by Nokia and/or Apple?</p></blockquote>

<p>Ian inserted the language concerning Ogg hoping it would lead to a consensus. There isn't a consensus, so rather than implement Nokia's suggestions he removed a mention of a specific codec. The general consensus still seems to be that any recommended or prescribed codecs have to be royalty-free and patent unencumbered.</p>

Posted by huxley at

Huxley: my point wasn’t that the removal was improper.  My point is that the spec isn’t in a state where it can be properly labeled as “shipped” in any manner of the word, and certainly not as “a comprehensive spec today”.

My point is that the current draft is indeed a draft, i.e., it is mutable and subject to change.

While it may very well be the case that my front page is valid according to the HTML5 spec as it exists at this instant; this does not imply that it will be valid according to the final HTML5 spec when it is published.  In fact, it does not even guarantee that it will be valid according to the next published draft.

Posted by Sam Ruby at

Sorry about that, I misread your objection.

Posted by huxley at

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The SVG bits validate now.

Posted by Henri Sivonen at

Meanwhile, Jackass 2.5 is available exclusively on SilverLight.

[link]

Posted by Mark at

[from edcrypt] Sam Ruby: Standards that Matter are Standards that Ship

[link]...

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Sam Ruby: Standards that Matter are Standards that Ship

“Fundamentally, Microsoft’s strategy is sound. Ignore standards that you find inconvenient, and focus on producing and enabling the production of content people want.”...

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