[development] xhtml and embed tag: best way to compliance?

Fabio Varesano fabio.varesano at gmail.com
Wed Jun 7 19:35:30 UTC 2006

Hi everybody,

I'm working on making my video module full XHTML compliant.

At the moment the module uses a lot of embed tags for displaying video
content (Quicktime, Flash, Wmv, Real, etc...).

The problem is that embed tags are NOT part of any W3C standard and
make a Drupal site which uses the Video module NOT W3 standard compliant.

W3 compliant tag for embedding videos on xhtml pages is object but
it's not well supported by Internet Explorer... so an object only
implementation is not possible.

So I investigate on some work around to create valid code but still IE

And I finally get some types of solutions:
1 - Javascript hacks:
basically leave only the object tag then onLoad add the embed tag to
the document.
2 - CSS Tricks
creating two nested objects then use some css hacks to hide one
3 - Extending XHTML
extends default XHTML dtds to create a custom made embed tag

While the first and second solutions are only hacks and are prone to
errors and incompatibility between current and future versions of
browsers, the third solution is much more elegant and should be
supported by future versions of browsers without giving us headaches.

So.. IMHO the best way in doing this is solution 3.

Extending XHTML can be done in two ways:
- creating a custom made DTD
- extending an existing DTD by adding new rule as an internal subset
directly in the document

The problem is that using a customized DTD will produce a document not
validable by W3C validator.. Other validators can be used.

Instead extending DTD directly on document will create a W3 validable
document but browsers (even firefox 1.5) will display a "]>" on the
first line of the page...

So... I'd like to hear your suggestion in facing this problem.
For me the DTD extension on document is the best solution but I need
to find some hacks to let browsers hide the "]>"...

What do you think about this???

Thank you.

Fabio Varesano

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