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Use of English[edit]

"Recommendation Document" is redundant by usage of "recommendation" since there is no other type of "recommendation" from a standards organization. (All "published" or "released" recommendations are published/released as a document. That a document is not the same thing as the ideas it conveys is more of a phisophical truth, than it is a practical point. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:48, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Article Quality[edit]

By definition I think, HTML precedes XHTML. The proper way to phrase their intercompatability is to say that XHTML is a superset of HTML instead of making an implication that is vice versa. The correct phrasing will state that XHTML is a specific variant of XML; the latter can be used outside of web browsers but HTML is only intended for a browser (or facsimile of a browser). From their, HTML version 1 is backwards compatible with some version of HTML and this is where the relationship -- standardized relattionship -- ends. Any compatibility between newer versions of either is mere coincidenence -- unless W3C doesn't remember what it measn to fork; something I doubt.

"Depth of Expression" has no dictionary meaning and should be removed or replaced. (By the way, "Depth of the Ocean" is clear as is "the ability to express details".)

Firstly, could we archive some of this talk page? A lot of it doesn’t really seem relevant to the current article.

I think this article is in need of some serious attention. There is a lot of information on here which is misleading or inaccurate. I’ve been trying to fix some of it, but there is just so much which needs doing on here. The-mart 10:27, 18 March 2007 (UTC)

Agreed. This talk page has 88kB now. It would be a good idea to prune it a bit. --- Arancaytar - avá artanhé (reply) 14:05, 19 March 2008 (UTC)


I did it. It was my first Archive though, so it should be correct, but it's called /Talk:XHTML/Archive1. Tcardone05 (talk) 04:37, 28 July 2008 (UTC)


I feel like being abusive to the editor who added so many citation needed tags. Some of them seem ridiculous. That's where some pruning is needed. Edetic (talk) 10:54, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

It would’ve been nice too if they’d actually tried looking for evidence to actually support or disprove a claim rather than just plonking the “citation needed” in, it doesn’t really do anything to improve the quality of this article. :o( Somebody added a “citation needed” to the claim “most web developers avoid using XHTML that isn’t HTML-compatible” under the Adoption section. I figure this is obvious to professional web developers, but not to people generally... so does it actually require a citation? As hard as I’ve looked, I can’t find any real metrics to cite about this (i.e. no-one has done a graph showing that 99.999% of XHTML is sent purely as text/html without any kind of content negotiation). Instead I’ve linked to List of XHTML Sites (the X-Philes); if anyone finds a site that is more quantitative, please feel free to switch it. Hexene (talk) 10:34, 26 August 2008 (UTC)


This sentence uses "however" to connect two statements that do not seem to contradict each other.

Many issues with compatibility are easily addressed; however, XHTML 2.0 can currently be parsed the same way a user agent would parse XHTML 1.1

Quite confusing. I can't even suggest a better sentence because I have no idea what the sentence says about compatibility.

In addition, the second statement sounds a bit implausible. With such serious changes as adding href and src attributes to all elements, essentially making all elements potential a and img tags at once, wouldn't most user agents have to change logic beyond simply using another DTD with their XML parser? And if the sentence didn't intend to deny that, shouldn't it be clarified? --- Arancaytar - avá artanhé (reply) 14:12, 19 March 2008 (UTC)


After the last edit, a clear explanation of the proper terminology would probably be a good idea. When does the space get in? Is it "HTML5" and "XHTML5", but "HTML 4.0" and "XHTML 1.0"? --- Arancaytar - avá artanhé (reply) 08:41, 25 March 2008 (UTC)

I think we should use spaces all occurrences. The HTML 5 drafts seem inconsistent, it's "HTML 5" in the title but "HTML5" and "XHTML5" everywhere else, and "XHTML 1.x" yet "XHTML2". Meanwhile the XHTML 2 Working Group usually have spaces in their documents. Hexene (talk) 13:41, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

Format question[edit]

Does anyone know why it is more correct to use "<br />" than "<br/>". I have found or been told about several references that state that there should be a space before the "/>" when ending XHTML statements but none of them say why. I know that "<br>", "</br>", "<br/>" and "<br />" will all technically work (although <br/> and <br /> are directly mentioned as rhe preferred way to be backwards compatible with some things) but I am trying to find out why that space is necessary. Also, does anyone now how the mediawiki server handles these? Does it treat them all as individuals or does it preformat them to a specific thing "<br />" for instance before it renders it?--Kumioko (talk) 20:35, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

In the XHTML 1.0 spec, appendix C (Compatibility Guidelines) is where <br /> is recommended. That appendix "summarizes design guidelines for authors who wish their XHTML documents to render on existing HTML user agents." At that time, it would've been referring mainly to Netscape 4.x and Internet Explorer 5.x. IIRC, unrecognized tags would be rendered by some old browsers as text, rather than ignored. It's not really an issue anymore.
MediaWiki generally accepts whatever HTML markup you enter without changing it. If you enter a <br> or any of its variations, that's what comes out in the HTML, which translates to line breaks in the rendered result. So, for example, to prevent a bunch of line breaks from appearing in your comment above, I had to wrap them in "nowiki" tags, which tell MediaWiki to convert the angle brackets to entity references in the HTML, so you'll actually see angle brackets in the rendered page. —mjb (talk) 23:19, 7 April 2008 (UTC)
Thank you, So whether you enter "<br>", "</br>", "<br/>" or "<br />" the Mediaserver treats them all as breaks and doesn't convert them from 1 thing to another, "<br/>" to "<br />" for instance? Last question, as I was editing articles I have been converting all the different breaks to "<br/>" partially for standardization and to be easier to read but aslo because I thought that the mediawiki server was converting "<br />" to "<br/>" so I thought I was actually helping to reduce the drag on the server by reducing the amount of conversions it had to make and to reduce the space by eliminating empty characters. My question in all that was is there any benefit to having "<br />" over "<br/>" or vice versa other than the "recommendations" of a reference that is overcome by events? Thanks again--Kumioko (talk) 17:57, 8 April 2008 (UTC)
These questions don't have much to do with the article on XHTML; they should probably be asked at Wikipedia:Village pump (technical) or mw:Project:Support desk. I'd start with the village pump. —mjb (talk) 04:17, 9 April 2008 (UTC)
The space following the element name should be addressed in the article, as it is a departure from normally required XML and is only needed for backwards compatibility. To address this particular discussion, the format '<br/>' is NOT backwards compatible and breaks in at least one of the major browsers (I forget which though I'd guess IE). The space is needed but also introduces a blemish into what strives to be a very clean standard. Erratio (talk) 03:19, 25 January 2009 (UTC)
For what it's worth, Netscape 4 was the reason for the space in '<br />'. I'm not aware of it being an issue in any "current" browser. Hexene (talk) 19:36, 28 January 2009 (UTC)

backward compatibility[edit]

The article mentions scripting as a possible solution to issues of backward compatibility between HTML 5 and XHTML 2. However, from a practical standpoint, I think the use of scripting introduces its own incompatibility issues[1][2]: Macintosh browsers interpret JavaScript differently from IE6 for Windows, for example. Should this be mentioned?

  1. ^ "Browser Compatibility: Introduction - Doc JavaScript".
  2. ^ "What Does and Does Not Work With JavaScript". (talk) 10:20, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

I don't think it's worth mentioning, as it would add unnecessary bulk to what is after all just two sentences. In practice I can't see cross-platform JavaScript becoming an issue here for the average developer, as they'll be more likely to use a JS library rather than rolling their own code. Thanks, Dave H. Hexene (talk) 15:42, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

The statement about scripting introducing its own incompatability cites a non-existent reason. The difference in differences seen between browsers running the same script is a function of the browsers lack of compliance with interpretation. Language syntax that doesn't conform to the language specs should through an error and refuse to run. Same goes for HTML -- errors in any of the markup languages. But the browsers have not been compatible with the W3C standard, which is a standard as opposed to simply using the term, and this problem goes back at least 9 years. (talk) 10:20, 9 Dec 2008 (UTC)

Wikipedia, XHTML, and You![edit]

The article lists Wikipedia as XHTML 1.0 Transitional, but a check on the W3C validator says it's XHTML 1.0 Strict. It's a minor nitpick, but is the caption for the image wrong? Markup of Tcardone05 (talk) 04:37, 28 July 2008 (UTC)

I would say the caption is correct. The front page at is Strict, but most of the site --, -- is Transitional. Cheers, Dave H. Hexene (talk) 19:28, 28 July 2008 (UTC)

Merge XHTML Basic to XHTML[edit]

Technically, XHTML Basic is just a subset of XHTML and the XHTML Basic article's contents would be better suited here instead of in a separate page. Also, this page is much more up to date on its recommendations and such when compared to the other article. Opinions? Karekare0 (talk) 22:19, 31 July 2008 (UTC)

  • Determining what information not to include can often be harder than deciding what to include. I wouldn't want to expand the XHTML Basic/XHTML-MP section of XHTML unnecessarily because the article as a whole would lose focus. I totally agree about the XHTML Basic article needing a tidy. Regards, Dave H. Hexene (talk) 22:47, 4 August 2008 (UTC)
  • Well, all the information in the XHTML Basic article is really already in this one. The history, use, description, and doctype of XHTML Basic is all in this article (even more so than in its own article), and having another article which just reiterates what's already here is pretty pointless. There wouldn't be really much to expand on in the current description. If XHTML 1.1 doesn't get its own page, why should XHTML Basic? karekare0 (talk) 02:29, 6 August 2008 (UTC)
    • Okay. Then what you're suggesting sounds reasonable to me. Regards, Dave. Hexene (talk) 10:18, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

I've merged the pages. karekare0 (talk) 18:32, 7 August 2008 (UTC)

Remove apostrophe from possessive "it"[edit]


In the section "Modularization of XHTML" the following sentence should have the apostrophe removed from "it's" as this is the possessive it, which uses no apostrophe.

"The feature is intended to help XHTML extend it’s reach onto emerging platforms, such as mobile devices and Web-enabled televisions."

Melizg (talk) 18:38, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

 Done Good job noticing that error :). All the Best, --Mifter (talk) 20:41, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Oops. That grammatical error was me. :o) Hexene (talk) 22:47, 4 August 2008 (UTC)

Change title for XHTML 1.2[edit]


The XHTML 2 Working Group removed the "Meaningful, Accessible XHTML" subtitle from XHTML 1.2 some time ago. You can see this at - FWIW I am the editor of pretty much all of the XHTML family specs, so you can take it from me ;-) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Halindrome (talkcontribs) 18:55, 7 January 2009

Done Cheers, Shane! Face-wink.svg haz (talk) 19:27, 7 January 2009 (UTC)

version attribute in the html element[edit]

Quoted from the "Root element" section:
"The root element of an XHTML document must be html, and must contain an xmlns attribute to associate it with the XHTML namespace. [...] For XHTML 1.1 and later there should also ideally be a version attribute to clearly identify the version of XHTML being used."
As I've understood the XHTML 1.1 DTD, the version attribute is fixed at "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.1//EN". Attempting to redefine it would be in vain. Perhaps the author of that line ment XHTML 1.2? Skoskav (talk) 01:16, 23 January 2009 (UTC)

gives an error in W3C checker[edit]

In fact it does give the following error in the W3C checker: "Attribute "version" exists, but can not be used for this element.". This should be removed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Leosdad (talkcontribs) 15:21, 5 October 2009 (UTC)

Common errors[edit]

The last sentence of this chapter should omit the version number from internet explorer, since the problem concerns all the versions. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:29, 24 January 2009 (UTC)


Is there a tutorial in this site or is this just about XHTML? NoRmIaD (talk) 22:43, 5 June 2009 (UTC)


"In January 2009 a second edition of the document was issued, relaxing this restriction and allowing XHTML 1.1 to be served as text/html.[34]"

I skimmed the W3C document referenced here, and this seems like an oversimplification. It looks like they allow text/html only if you're using the subset of XHTML that is also in HTML (no external namespaces, etc.). Is that correct? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:24, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

akteruz.html Akteruz (talk) 04:07, 28 July 2016 (UTC)

Motivation vs. What Happened[edit]

Each motivation should be contrasted with what actually happened. For example, Opera Mini solved HTML on constarined devices. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:14, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

Yeah, the Motivation section is very rosy right now. It might deserve some refactoring ("what actually happened" doesn't belong in a section on motivation). —Simetrical (talk • contribs) 21:53, 4 September 2009 (UTC)

Current status of spec?[edit]

The Overview section is a little unclear on the current status of the spec. The first paragraph says "specifications for HTML5 and XHTML5 are being actively developed" but the second says, "In 2009, the W3C allowed the XHTML 2 Working Group's charter to expire, acknowledging that HTML 5 would be the sole next-generation HTML standard." Is the XHTML 5 spec still being actively developed, without a W3C charter? Or does the first paragraph need to be updated? Clconway (talk) 16:44, 31 October 2009 (UTC)

I'm just trying to make sense of it. So the XHTML 2 Working Group has been closed. Am I right to make out that the XHTML 2 project is on hold at the moment, to be one day continued by a handful of new working groups and eventually developed into a standard? — Smjg (talk) 22:46, 5 January 2012 (UTC)

Please, no more HTML 5 on this page[edit]

I would like to request for people to refrain adding any more HTML5 specific stuff to this wiki page. This page is about XHTML, which is not the same as HTML5. HTML5 has its own page.

Even if XHTML is now on a dead end, that doesn't mean that this page should slowly turn into a HTML5 page as XHTML dies. Thank you.

Pim 2 (talk) 21:35, 1 February 2010 (UTC)

HTML5 defines an XML serialization, XHTML5, which can legitimately be called XHTML, so it belongs in this article. —Simetrical (talk • contribs) 15:49, 2 February 2010 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but you are incorrect. Just because the HTML5 specification defines an XML serialization, and calls it XHTML, does not make it XHTML. HTML is not, and will never, fully conform to the specification, modularization, or even strictness of XHTML, XML, or anything like XML. It cannot be served with an XHTML or XML mimetype because it is just a serialization (and a very basic one at that). The XHTML spec is laid out with the modulization of HTML-like control via XML in a fashion that allows permanent extension (as is the entire nature of XML). HTML, on the other hand, allows no extension of the language past specified recommendations. As a perfect example, HTML will never support namespaces. This means that until the HTML Working Group defines that HTML will allow items like MathML, SVG (now in the spec), etc, and the tags for them, no vendor may add tags to the language to extend it (legally anyway, per specification).
Additionally, while the current XHTML working group is "dead and/or dying" (such a stupid assumption based on an expired charter) at this current point in time, this does not mean, in the name of open standards, that it will never be revieved again. At any time someone may take control of that WG in order to continue the life and growth of XHTML as XHTML (rather than XHTML as HTML). As such, HTML and its "XHTML5" standard have no logical place in its history or future, with the possible exception of a small note related to HTML's attempt to allow XML-like serialization inside the spec allowing for forward compatability with legacy XHTML documents. (talk) 00:16, 8 September 2010 (UTC)
Wrong. XHTML5 documents MUST be served with a (*+)XML mimetype - a requirement which goes beyond any other XHTML variant and gives it a well-formedness requirement equal to that of any other XML document. This article is about XHTML, not XHTML™. This argument is akin to saying that anything which isn't UNIX™ isn't Unix, and doesn't belong in the article on Unix. "Modularization" refers to how the schema implementation for >= XHTML 1.1 is organized. What makes a document XHTML is not it's being an XML instance associated with one of W3C's DTD or w3c-schema implementations of XHTML.
XHTML5 is parsed as XML, and it's elements are under the same namespace as all other XHTML flavors, which in my book makes it 100% XHTML. You wouldn't say that mixed-namespace documents which fully conform to W3C XHTML specifications aren't XHTML (though XHTML5 isn't exactly a superset of XHTML.) It is difficult to compare the two because the respective focus of HTML5 and XHTML are very different (on the DOM and features versus on XML integration and formalized specification). If you were to take an XHTML document and remove the doctype declaration then you end up with what some might call XHTML5, which is why the term is a little ambiguous and meaningless. There's also nothing stopping you from writing a formal schema for XHTML5 and associating it with your document (they exist). With the exception of treatment of DTD external entities, at least for now browsers don't distinguish between "XML documents which contain XHTML-namespaced elements" and "XML documents whose schema specifications are historically tied to W3C's XHTML versions".
The article should accurately discuss and make clear the distinctions between and history of the various relevant forms of XHTML rather than try to determine what constitutes XHTML by defining it in terms of it's origins.
BTW, IMHO it's XML that makes extensibility easier, not modularization. Go ask an average-joe webpage writer whether they could explain to you the process of extending the specification of their XHTML+RDFa document to support validation of SVG elements or ARIA role attributes. Ormaaj (talk) 21:43, 12 December 2010 (UTC)
Regardless of the enormous complexity of this discussion so far, I felt that the previous section title, "HTML5—Vocabulary and APIs for HTML5 and XHTML5" was similarly verbose and obtuse. I have simplified it to "XHTML5", which is clearly a relevant subtopic here; the previous was neither clear or obviously relevant. I have not (yet) altered any of the content of that section, but I hope that the simpler title will help all contributors simplify and focus the treatment of this topic in this article. --Nigelj (talk) 12:01, 13 December 2010 (UTC)

Standard or not...[edit]

XML is not a standard, nor was it made so in 1998 as proclaimed in the article (or in reference [7] for that sake). XML, HTML, XHTML, ... are recommendation specifications made by W3C. And nothing more.

W3C does not make standards, they make recommendations. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:36, 14 July 2011 (UTC)

Relationship to HTML[edit]

  "There are various differences between XHTML and HTML. The Document Object Model (DOM) is a tree structure that represents the page internally in applications, and XHTML and HTML are two different ways of representing that in markup (serializations)"

This doesn't read very well, The double 'and'; "...applications, and XHTML and HTML are..." makes it harder to parse this than it should be. Additionally, The description of DOM's should probably be in it's own sentence. Primis (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 13:24, 23 June 2016 (UTC)

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XHTML is dead[edit]

Apologies if this sounds a bit brutal, but it is very important information and definitely encyclopaedic, to note that XHTML never really took over the internet and that it is not being actively implemented very much nowadays. The article makes no note of this. Perhaps a little information about support in the latest development tooling and frameworks would highlight the status with facts rather than an opinion. DouglasHeld (talk) 10:24, 19 July 2018 (UTC)