[standards-jig] Icon Styles - object tag?

Mattias Campe mattias.campe at rug.ac.be
Thu Jan 2 15:34:38 UTC 2003

Adam Theo heeft geschreven:
> Hi all. Wondering if anyone has been able to find out if the XHTML 
> <object/> element is also used for audio files as well, or if it is just 
>  for visual objects as I suspect. If <object/> is not used for audio, 
> then I'll stick with my current spec for JEP 0038.

Sorry Theo, due to lots of work, I didn't had the time right away to 
check for more info about that <object /> element (although I promised), 
but now I've took some time. The 2 key things about that <object /> 
element are:

Object elements can be nested, the outer most object-tag indicates the 
prefered use of the author. Eg. it could be that sb. makes flash icons 
(because he's great in programming Flash), but he knows that not all the 
clients can (or want to) display Flash, so he makes a screenshot of that 
Flash object and saves it as eg. a .png and he saves the sound too.

Eg. (just illustrative, I didn't check the correct mime-types):
<object data="happy.swf" type="application/flash">
   <object data="happy.png" type="graphic/png" />
   <object data="happy.wav" type="audio/wav" />

Now there might be some parameters that you want to give with your 
multimedia object file. Eg. it could be that you really love animated 
graphics (gif,mng,...), but you don't want them jumping and moving all 
around the place, you only want them to be animated twice:

   <object data="happy.gif" type="graphic/gif">
    <param name="PlayCount" value="2" />

Now, why actually go for a general object tag?:

I think your biggest concern was the difference between graphics and 
sounds, what would explain the use of <graphic> and <sound> tags. Eg. 
the volume of a sound file can easily be defined, while this isn't true 
for a .png. But the fact is that the differences doesn't stop between 
graphics and sounds. Even within graphics there are differences: eg. you 
can define a PlayCount for a .gif, but not for a .png.

Also, take eg. Jabberzilla, it's a Jabber client that can be installed 
in the sidebar of Mozilla (I don't think it's usable yet for the end 
user, but I think it's a great project): Jabberzilla will be able to use 
the rendering capacities of Mozilla to render JEP-38 compliant 
emoticons, what would be a great advantage, because there isn't need for 
another rendering engine! Maybe that Jabber clients even are the next 
generation browsers :D!

That's why I would go for a general object-tag, because I don't think 
it's possible to have a good, straightforwarded, but still easy 
classification of all the possible multimedia objects through their 
properties. Possible confusion about a general object-tag can be avoided 
through some clear use case examples within the JEP038 specification.

I hope this helps,

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