XHTML 2 vs HTML 5 and the href Attribute

Spider web window - common motif in the Winchester HouseI wrote a little earlier about what I was looking forward to in HTML 5.  I haven’t had a chance to really collect my thoughts about XHTML 2 vs HTML 5, to be honest I’d be happy to see progress on both fronts.  I do have to say I lost interest in XHTML 2 early on when it seemed they were throwing some baby out with the bathwater.  HTML is not the cleanest, most elegant language but the ease of picking it up is part of why the web grew so quickly.  Even if that has forced browsers to cope with millions of pages of clunky, broken HTML.

Eric Meyer has at least one point in XHTML 2’s favor – the ability to add and href attribute to anything, making it a link.  In addition to making the <a> tag jealous, this would let you do some pretty cool stuff like turn an entire table row into a link in a dynamic data reporting web app without a lot of Javascript or duplicated tags.

By the way Eric is a fellow member of the Cleveland Web Standards Association and a great speaker.  If you get a chance to see a talk by him you should really check it out.