What is new in XHTML 2.0?

On 2005-05-27 (ISO Date), a working draft of XHTML 2.0 is published (not yet authorized).

XHTML 2.0 draft breaks backwards compatibility with previous versions. This is, in effect, a new markup language created to overcome HTML/XHTML limitations. XHTML 2.0 suggests to use XHTML strictly for structure and style sheet for presentation, supports more internationalization features, and introduces a lot of new elements and features. Below is some of them listed.

  1. Navigation lists: You would have used/observed navigation methods consisting of a collection of links to other parts of the site, presented vertically, horizontally, or as a drop-down menu. To support this type of usage, XHTML 2 introduces the navigation list element <nl>, which codifies such parts of documents, and allows different presentational idioms to be applied.
  2. Any element may have a src attribute, which specifies a resource (such as an image) to load instead of the element. If the resource is unavailable (because of network failure, because it is of a type that the browser can’t handle, or because images have been turned off) then the element is used instead.
  3. Any element can now have a hyperlink, since href and its associated attributes may now appear on any element. So for instance, instead of <li%gt;<a href=”home.html”>Home</a><li>, you can now write <li href=”home.html”>Home</li>.
  4. <hr> has been renamed to <separator>.
  5. Introduced a new element, <l> for line breaks, instead of <br />. This represents a semantic line of text (e.g., a line of verse or a line of computer code).
  6. The img element is a holder for embedding attributes such as src. Since these attributes may be applied to any element, the img element is not strictly necessary, but is included to ease the transition to XHTML2.
  7. Uses XML Events to specify event handling, giving greater freedom in the ability to handle events, which uses the XML Document Object Model.
  8. XForms to replace HTML forms.
  9. XFrames to replace HTML frames.
  10. The section element, in conjunction with the h element, offers a mechanism for structuring documents into sections. This element defines content to be block-level but imposes no other presentational idioms on the content, which may otherwise be controlled from a style sheet. The heading elements (i.e. <h1>, <h2>, <h3>, etc.) will be deprecated in favour of the single element <h>.
  11. The presentational elements <i>, <b> and <tt> will be absent from XHTML 2.0. The only presentational elements remaining will be <sup> and <sub> for superscript and subscript respectively.
  12. The p element represents a paragraph. In comparison with earlier versions of HTML, where a paragraph could only contain inline text, XHTML2’s paragraphs represent the conceptual idea of a paragraph, and so may contain lists, blockquotes, pre’s and tables as well as inline text. Note however that they may not contain directly nested p elements.
  13. The abbr element indicates that a text fragment is an abbreviation (e.g., W3C, XML, Inc., Ltd., Mass., etc.); this includes acronyms.
  14. blockcode element to indicate that its contents are a block of “code”.
  15. The cite element contains a citation or a reference to other sources.
  16. The code element contains a fragment of computer code.
  17. The dfn element contains the defining instance of the enclosed term.
  18. The kbd element indicates input to be entered by the user.
  19. The quote element designates an inline text fragment of quoted text.
  20. Rather than use explicit ins and del elements to mark changes in a document, an attribute edit may be used on any element for the same purpose.
  21. The samp element designates sample output from programs, scripts, etc..
  22. The var element indicates an instance of a variable or program argument.

Read more : XHTML 2.0 working draft at W3C

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