role posts

TMCom Goes HTML 5 (Doctype anyway)

I’ve finally joined the bandwagon and moved my site (not this blog) to the HTML 5 doctype. It is much simpler than previous doctypes:

<!DOCTYPE html>

breaking away from the SGML standard of including a reference to the DTD for that doctype. I’m not sure how this will play out as HTML moves beyond 5, but I’m sure it won’t be a problem for a while anyway. And hopefully with all this time they are taking to finalize the specifications, we won’t have problems with backward compatibility, future expansion, validation of old documents, etc.

Anyway, I had considered using the doctype a while back but abandoned it for reasons I don’t remember. The “role” attribute, which I first noticed in WordPress themes, is what got me to consider HTML 5 again. It offers potential accessibility benefits to user agents that know about it by specifying what an elements “role” is in relation to its document: navigation, banner, main, contentinfo, etc. HTML 5 offers elements with similar meanings, but they are not supported well. The attribute is not valid in XHTML 1 (it was proposed for XHTML 2, which never came about), and my attempts at an alternative doctype failed.

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