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XHTML compliance issues in CD

This thread http://discuss.fogcreek.com/CityDesk/default.asp?cmd=show&ixPost=9429&ixReplies=10 discusses the "HTML reformatting problem".

Personally I'd like to have valid XHTML, and unlike some of the opinions there I don't have a problem in principle with the editor rewriting between views to achieve that.

There are however two issues, one a bug and one fundamental to Citydesk.

1. The bug : CD currently not only rewrites invalid XHTML, it also sometimes mangles perfectly valid XHTML, in particular CDATA Marked Sections which are essential if you want to include PHP or Javascript correctly.

2. The article may be valid XHTML only _after_ Cityscript expansion. This is a fundamental problem and one Fogcreek should perhaps have thought more about before imposing the XHTML validator on all articles. In some cases the syntax of Cityscript makes it certain that the the pre-expansion article will be invalid. At the least there should be, as suggested in the earlier thread, a per-article "never switch views" flag.

[technical note : Strictly speaking CD is trying to validate the content of an article not as an XHTML document, but as a conformant <body> section]

Michael Wild
Monday, December 01, 2003

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