|W3C and WHATWG Agree To Work Together Over HTML and DOM
|Written by Ian Elliot
|Tuesday, 28 May 2019
W3C and WHATWG have today signed an agreement that will allow for the development of a single version of the HTML and DOM specifications. This effectively reverses a split that took place seven years ago.
The announcement of the Memorandum of Understanding Between W3C and WHATWG states:
Motivated by the belief that having two distinct HTML and DOM specifications claiming to be normative is generally harmful for the community, and the mutual desire to bring the work back together, W3C and WHATWG agree to the following terms:
Having two standards for HTML5 has indeed been inconvenient. When we reported the split back in 2012, Which HTML5? - WHATWG and W3C Split I commented:
Overall this doesn't seem to be a good development. It will no longer be possible to say exactly what HTML5 is - the W3C's snapshot or the living standard of WHATWG.
Having the two bodies working together should bring us the best of both worlds - the speedier responsiveness of WHATWG, they are the people who made HTML 5 happen, which effectively will be the body working on the specifications, plus the oversight of the W3C for "broader issues".
As the W3C announcement confirms:
W3C remains committed to ensuring that HTML development continues to take into account the needs of the global community, and continues to improve in areas such as accessibility, internationalization and privacy while providing greater interoperability, performance and security.
This has been an interesting experiment and fortunately for us it mostly worked. After the HTML 5 specification was finalized. the split between WHATWG and W3C caused some confusion. but today it is more about what the key browsers - Chromium, Firefox and Safari - actually support rather than the standards. Yes it's still the era of "can I use?".
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|Last Updated ( Friday, 08 November 2019 )