[webkit-dev] MathML Refresh Heads up

Ryosuke Niwa rniwa at webkit.org
Fri Mar 15 16:04:04 PDT 2019

On Fri, Mar 15, 2019 at 3:33 PM Frédéric Wang <fwang at igalia.com> wrote:

> Hi Ryosuke and Myles,
> Thank you for your reply. First, the exact thing about what will be in
> MathML Core is still open, people are welcome to join and participate to
> the MathML CG [1] or comment on the GitHub tracker [2].
> Our plan was also to remove features from WebKit but of course ultimately
> the consensus has to be made in the WebKit community (hence our heads up
> email). What do you suggest? Should we send "intent to remove" to this
> mailing list?

Ultimately, we need some testing to ensure whatever iOS and macOS apps, or
websites that specifically target WebKit and Gecko that use MathML don't
get broken by those removals. Because there isn't an easy way to do that
right now, my suggestion is not remove any features for now.

Put it another way, what's the benefit of removing features in WebKit
before fixing other MathML bugs? If the only benefit is that Blink may have
an easier time implementing the rest and therefore might be more
interoperable, I really don't buy that argument given MathML isn't
supported at all in Blink today.

For now, these are the features the CG has already agreed to not include in
> MathML Core (more to come). We would like to propose to remove them from
> WebKit:
> * "thin", "thick", "medium" values of mfrac's linethickness attribute (
> https://github.com/mathml-refresh/mathml/issues/4 )
> * "small" "normal" "big" values of mathsize attribute (
> https://github.com/mathml-refresh/mathml/issues/7 )
> * nonzero unitless values for MathML lengths (
> https://github.com/mathml-refresh/mathml/issues/24 )
> * fontfamily, fontweight, fontstyle, fontsize, color, background MathML
> attributes ( https://github.com/mathml-refresh/mathml/issues/5 )

These all seem like something out in the wild might be using.
https://github.com/search?q=mathml+fontweight&type=Code yields quite a few
examples in which fontweight content attribute is being used for example.

In any case, it would be very appreciated to get some analysis about the
> usage of MathML markup used in Apple's product. How can we proceed to
> obtain it?

Unfortunately, there isn't an easy way to do this right now. I wish there
was, and it's something we want to improve over time.

- R. Niwa
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