W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-sgml-wg@w3.org > December 1996

Re: More proposals -- and some critical implementation issues

From: David G. Durand <dgd@cs.bu.edu>
Date: Tue, 31 Dec 1996 13:12:30 -0500
Message-Id: <v02130506aeeef4881d0e@[]>
To: w3c-sgml-wg@www10.w3.org
At 6:15 AM 12/31/96, Martin Bryan wrote:
>At 13:31 30/12/96 -0500, David G. Durand wrote:
>>Punting was really a joke, referring to the fact that we are letting the
>>DTD slide in a case where it seems to be required. Of course its the
>>natural way to solve the problem, I suggested it, didn't I?
>I thought that it was sufficient to say that if you transmitted the DTD and
>expect the browser to parse that then you could define a fixed XML attribute
>in the DTD but if you did not transmit the DTD (because the browser could
>not process it) then you had to add the XML attribute to all instances of
>elements that are to exhibit linkedness.

Since we have gone to great lengths to enable an Explorer or
Navigator-equivalent to avoid processing DTDs, we can't afford to require
them for linking behavior to work. This is only my opinion, but it's sure a
hard case to make as part of a sales pitch. Same for the attribute values
-- the redundancy will be noticable, and make XML look foolish, when it is
in fact merely being punctilious.

>The idea of leaving it to the style
>sheet to say "this is a link" appals me as I cannot manage my links properly
>this way. (I could live with the link definition being defined as an SGML
>link attribute, but I suspect that would bring a ton of brickbats on my head!)

   I was not suggesting stylesheets as the primary linking strategy, but as
a way for authors to deal with the practical facts of life. _I_ might be
willing to live with the attribute values, but I doubt most users would...
I think that we could even (if technically feasible) try to define things
so that link-style processing could not be invoked by markup if the
archform were not present _if a DTD were parsed_. The problem is that we
then need two processing semantics for identical markup: and that also
seems very problematic to me.

   I agree that having only code as the definition of links is a horrible
fate: you can't even gurantee whether or not something is a link, in that
case. As I mentioned to Gavin, Hypercard is the horrible example of a
system that made this mistake.

  -- David

I am not a number. I am an undefined character.
David Durand              dgd@cs.bu.edu  \  david@dynamicDiagrams.com
Boston University Computer Science        \  Sr. Analyst
http://www.cs.bu.edu/students/grads/dgd/   \  Dynamic Diagrams
--------------------------------------------\  http://dynamicDiagrams.com/
MAPA: mapping for the WWW                    \__________________________
Received on Tuesday, 31 December 1996 13:06:35 UTC

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