Working together for standards The Web Standards Project

That’s what Paul Festa reports in his August 20th article, Opera casts off legacy code for speed. Many of us have hoped that Opera would listen to the numerous complaints about lack of DOM support for their otherwise very good browser. Many developers out there may feel that Paul’s article would have been more accurate if he’d stated that Opera will finally support the DOM, though, since support has been quite disappointing to this point. I’m personally thrilled to hear this promising news, and I’m sure many developers out there look forward to this big improvement in Opera’s otherwise excellent browser. I also hope their new rendering engine continues to be fast.

(See Opera’s DOM documentation for details, Peter-Paul Koch’s notes, or my review of Opera 6 last February.)

Paul also talked to Monte Hurd, a systems architect in Clearwater, Fla:

“Opera and other Microsoft competitors would do better to support the technologies that the market-leading Internet Explorer browser made available, rather than focusing on industry standards.

” ‘What these other browser makers should do is stop complaining about what Microsoft is doing and start supporting what Microsoft is supporting,’ Hurd said. ‘People out there aren’t reading these specs; they’re using IE.’ “

I suspect we could have an interesting conversation. After all, Microsoft provides continually improving standards support with their browsers, Microsoft is a W3C member, they’re actively involved in numerous W3C committees and activities, and they have also openly supported standards for awhile now, even though they also have proprietary goodies of their own.

So, according to Hurd’s logic, since Microsoft supports standards, perhaps he ought to also consider supporting standards. Just an idea.

Aside from Microsoft’s involvement with standards, there really are good reasons to consider standards but I guess he doesn’t know about that yet.

Paul also states that the DOM is “an emerging standard technology that lets scripts, like JavaScript, act on individual elements of a Web page.” From my vantage point this 4-year-old technology with its 3rd generation under development is no longer a new and emerging technology. DOM Level 1 is dated October, 1998 and provided support for XML 1.0 and HTML 4.0. DOM Level 2 is dated November 2000 and extended support for XML 1.0 with namespaces, added support for CSS. DOM Level 3 is currently under development (due for completion soon) and will add further support for XML 1.0.

Hurd and I do agree on one point, at least, that we like Opera and look forward to its DOM support and other improvements.

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