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7 silliest W3C specs ever published

W3C is producing lots and lots of good specifications and we seriously have their joined effort to thank for a lot of today’s web. But everything released by them isn’t all nice. I’ve digged deep into obscure search results to find, that’s right, the silliest specifications ever. *Drumroll*.

HTML+TIME: Why not add timers to HTML? Didn’t you always want to only display that div only the first 4 seconds after load. Could this be combined with the blink tag somehow?

Predefined icon entities: No more images needed! Instead, let browsers implement whatever icons they want and just use them by typing &calculator;, &fax; or &www;. I love the example icon for &gopher;, is that an orc?

CURIE Syntax: There are also huge specifications for nothing. What about a 2000+ word specifcation for the syntax: “charcters:characters”? This is what happens when you put too many “scientists” in one room.

Micropayments in HTML: If you’re going to make micropayments on the web, first build your payment system, then add lots of attributes you don’t need. Then make sure you pick a short code for your payment system, and get that one in the spec. Ehmm. No.

Selecting Payment Over HTTP: If you are into paying, but don’t really like interfaces, this one is for you. You can’t pay through it though, just select how to pay. Makes sense, doesn’t it?

CSS Marquee Module Level 3: Remember the marquee element? What if you could implement that on any element, using only CSS3? Isn’t marquee behavior? I guess not. “The deadline for comments is 1 September 2008”.

Accessibility for old people: Very strange. This isn’t a specification but a literature review. Could this be the first step for W3C to go into book recommendations? I love the chapter of how to define an old person.

That’s all I can find. Now I leave it open to you to fill in with the comments about how useful they could be, and how SOAP should be in the list. Over to you, dear audience.

Friendly Bit is a blog by Emil Stenström, a Swedish web developer that occasionally gets ideas of how to improve the internet.