Open Web Platform Weekly Summary – 2011-11-07 – 2011-11-13

This week, the Open Web Platform weekly summary is about hgroup and time elements, lang attribute. There are discussions on starting work on Web Intents and how to create a simpler DOM for documents fragments. Plenty of other things. Enjoy.


The hgroup element, which was proposed for defining sub headlines, is still being actively discussed. It is not yet clear if it should be replaced by a different element with a simpler content model, by an attribute, just dropped or maintained.

The lang attribute helps authors to specify the language of the content in an HTML page. Some people consider that the lang attribute validation constraints are not sufficient.

Tantek Çelik (Mozilla) is proposing refinements for the time element, which has just been added again to W3C HTML5 Editor draft.

Web Apps

Bryan Sullivan (AT&T) is writing a “Push API” that would use the Server-Sent Events specification. That becomes handy in situation of low consumption on mobile handsets by offloading management of EventSource connections. The event delivery can be handled by other types of push servers.

Web Intents

The WebApps and Device APIs WGs are joining forces around Web Intents proposal, the new cool kid in town. The aim is to reinvent a kind of Web RPC. Basically Web applications should be able to register themselves so you can hook them to specific services. For example if you want to trigger a specific Web applications for managing mailto: links.


AppCache is a technology which was created for enabling the possibility for an application to run offline. After having been deployed for a while, Web developers have noticed a lot of issues in the way it was initially built. A community group has been created for Fixing Application Cache. Join!


Yehuda Katz would like to be able to take a string of HTML and parse it into a document fragment without knowing the context in advance.

var frag = document.createDocumentFragment();
frag.innerHTML = "<tr><td>hello</td></tr>"

João Eiras (Opera) agrees but proposes a different code.

Ojan Vafai (Chromium Team) proposed to create new methods for the DOM instead of hacking around the old ones.

lets add the following methods to Node:

prepend(nodeish) – Adds to the start of the node. append(nodeish) – Adds to the end of the node. before(nodeish) – Adds before the node. after(nodeish) – Adds after the node. replace(nodeish) – Replaces the node. remove() – Removes the node.

Anne van Kesteren (Opera) described the new DOM methods and their model. It’s not yet stabilized. Read the full thread.

If you remember I talked already a few times about mutation events. The work is still in progress. So much that the initial musings on them has been scraped. The specification contains currently a placeholder on how Mutation Events are implemented in Chrome and being implemented in Mozilla but this is likely to change again.

Web Architecture

The W3C Technical Architecture Group has started a discussion about the experimental Google Protocol SPDY and its interactions with Web Architecture. The latency in HTTP communications is an issue that Web developers and browser implementers are trying to tackle. In an era of applications being on the Web, the hunt to anything slowing down the responsiveness is important. Google worked on a proposal for modifying the way the client and the server communicates. This has strong consequences for the Web architecture, among others caching.


You love moving blocks around? Yes but which syntax in which language? An effort, currently only an editor draft, is going on to merge SVG/CSS/2D/3D transforms specifications as a unique transform specification.


  • X-Forwarded-For: is currently the way that some proxies indicates that the HTTP request they are handling is coming from another IP. A. Petersson, M. Nilsson are writing an IETF RFC draft for defining Forwarded-For HTTP header. For example, clients with an ip1 (such as Opera Mini or Amazon Silk) are using a proxy client (with an ip2) for creating the HTTP requests. The proxy will send to the requested server, the following information.

    X-Forwarded-For: ip1


You know it already: Cool URIs do not change. It means that you should be able to maintain your URIs space for a very long time so people can rely on them when interacting on the Web. You could even create a URI persistence policy for your company or organization. The W3C and the Digital Curation Centre are organizing a workshop on Domain names and persistence on December 8, 2011, in Bristol (UK).

Tools and Tutorials

This week, the theme of Anne Van Kesteren’s report is mainly about TPAC 2011.

This column is written by Karl Dubost, working in the Developer Relations team at Opera Software.