From: Peter Lind

> On 1 July 2010 14:38, Bob McConnell <> wrote:
>> From: Adam Richardson
>>> On Wed, Jun 30, 2010 at 9:16 PM, David Mehler
>> wrote:
>>>> Hello,
>>>> I've got a php form processing question. I've got a text field like
>> so:
>>>> <div>
>>>> <label for="txtname">Name*:</label>
>>>> <input type="text" name="name" id="name" size="30" value="<?php
>>>> htmlspecialchars($_POST['name']), ENT_QUOTES, UTF-8; ?>" /> <br />
>>>> </div>
>>>> My question is what is the purpose of the id field? I know the name
>>>> field is what php references, but am not sure what id is for?
>>> Sometimes it's helpful to target a specific element for stylistic or
>>> functional purposes, and that's when you'll find an id attribute
>> helpful.
>>> In your example above, label elements use the id in the 'for'
>> attribute
>>> (and, speaking to your example, you should have for="name" instead
>>> for="txtname"):
>>> In terms of CSS, you can specifically reference the element by it's
>> using
>>> the notation tag_name#id_value, and id's have the highest order of
>>> specificity (i.e., if you try and style an element by tag name,
>>> and/or id, the id styles are what will take precedent, all other
>> things
>>> equal.)
>>> In terms of javascript, you can reference the element by it's id by
>> using
>>> the function getElementById('id_value):
>>> Just remember that a particular id can only occur once on a page
>> (another
>>> difference between the name attributes in a form, as you could have
>> multiple
>>> forms on a page and each form could have an input with a "zip" name
>> without
>>> issue, but that same page could only have one id with the value
>> "zip".)
>>> That all said, with the advent of javascript data attributes, you'll
>> have
>>> one more way to target elements for design and functionality:
>> If you look at the current HTML 4.01 and XHTML 1.0 specification, you
>> will find 'name' is no longer listed as a standard attribute. It is
>> but obsolete and has been replaced by 'id' almost everywhere. They
>> actually recommend you put both attributes into tags with identical
>> values until your applications can be updated to drop all uses of the
>> name attribute.
>> <>
> Errr, what? Name is by no means obsolete for forms. Have a look at
> - it's still in the html5 spec and there's little to no chance of it
> going away any time soon.

HTML5 is years away from completion and still changes far too often, so
we don't consider it nearly ready for prime time. XHTML is here now, has
several usable validation suites and has been stable for years. That's
more of a reasonable target for commercial products.

> Relying on w3schools is not ... really advisable.

Where else would you go? Even W3C doesn't publish decent reference
documents, and their specifications are inscrutable to normal human

Bob McConnell

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