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From Chris Bentley <>
Subject Re: no more Quirks Mode (Was: GUI Design: Cold sweat)
Date Tue, 28 May 2002 09:07:55 GMT
> I am currently investigating the Forrest sitemap and
> the Cocoon serializer capability to output the document
> type declaration. At the moment, we are not writing any
> declaration. Hence the "Quirks Mode" alerted by Chris below.
> It is not sufficient to simply add the document type
> declaration. I am also validating the output against
> the declared DTD. That is where i am encountering a few
> issues ... the various stylesheets need tweaking.

By process that Bert is building to, there a rational reason to stay in
Quirks mode; the reasoning would be;

*I'm building to the standard of a "Non Standards Compliant" (quirky)
*If I switch "Standards Mode" on then it complicates the CSS and some HTMLy
*if I can keep the CSS simple and not go near Box models issues I can
bootstrap the CSS form there.

> I have one question for the list. The last stylesheet
> in our documentation pipeline is "site2xhtml.xsl".
> I presume that the intention is to output XHTML. So i
> am aiming for DTD XHTML Transitional. Does that sound OK?

Using this DTD now will force "Standards Mode and complicate Bert's life?...

but I think you can still output XHTML without the DOCTYPE .. if there is a
reason. I'm pretty sure it just has to be well formed - not necessarily
valid - its just really some form of markup that looks like HTML to the

eg No declaration, no DOCTYPE and <br> become <br /> etc.

The only reason to do this now would be that your markup would be already
well formed XML if at some point in the future you wish to do valid XML. And
I'm reasonably sure (in lue of testing) that there is no backward
compatibility probs as long as you don't try to Validate.

> If it gets too hard, then i am going to back down and go
> for DTD HTML 4.2 to get something started.

If you go HTML 4.01 transitional leave off the URI part or you will force
the "Quirks mode" issue.

I think Bert will have some strong opinions about this.

> Anyway, i just thought that i would let you know what
> i am up to.
> --David
> David Crossley wrote:
>> Christopher Bentley wrote:
>>> I have reviewed the archives and some of your existing HTML and CSS and
>>> I am concerned on your behalf by some of the discussions and decisions
>>> being made about the design of the HTML and CSS....
>> Many thanks for your review efforts. This is all extremely
>> valuable. I will try to answer a few bits here, then i think
>> that we should split some of it off into separate threads.
>> First a little overview of why the generated pages are in this
>> state. This is very early days in the Forrest project. So far,
>> we have been concentrating on getting the infrastructure
>> in place. We recently put the build system underneath it thanks
>> to Krysalis Centipede. Cocoon is at the guts of Forrest, and
>> is now working to generate Forrest's own docs.
>> Now it is time to fine-tune the various transformations,
>> and feed some of the changes back to Cocoon. Forrest intends
>> to be exemplary. We have the tools in place, so now we can
>> gradually make it happen.
>>> The most urgent question in my mind is
>>> 1. Why are you developing HTML and CSS in Quirks Mode?
>> Not intentional. The transformers can certainly be made
>> to output the document type declaration.
> I am investigating this at the moment. The
>>> - Do you plan to continue this into production?
>>> - If your are intending to switch Strict Mode on then
>>> which DTD will your output be written against?
>> We will certainly have the declaration well before we reach
>> production. Which DTD ... let us discuss this in a new
>> thread. Perhaps we can use HTML 4.2 Transitional for now
>> and gradually move to a better DTD. I do not see any
>> reason for not ending up with XHTML Strict.
>>> If this is actually unresolved then it is very important you do.. your
>>> CSS is already poised to break all versions of Netscape (it's written
>>> against the IE Box model not the W3C Box model)
>>> If you have no Idea what I'm taking about you can read about it here;
>>> <>
>>> /
>>> cssenhancements.asp>
>>> <>
>> Thanks for those useful pointers. I will try to find
>> a relevant place in the documents to keep these handy.
> <snip/>


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