Re: Hyperlinks: (1. Background)
Subject: Re: Hyperlinks: (1. Background)
From: email@example.com (David G. Durand)
Date: Fri, 20 Dec 1996 11:56:48 -0500
From firstname.lastname@example.org Fri Dec 20 11: 50:16 1996
Per Tim's reasonable suggestion, I am breaking up my commentary message
into topical email-bites.
At 8:19 PM 12/19/96, Tim Bray wrote:
>Minimum Progress Required to Declare Victory
>The Web is the largest working hypermedia instance. It supports one
>widely-used form of hyperlink, the <A> or Anchor element. These links are
>unidirectional and [this is a basic design principle of the web] specify
>basically nothing about their target except its location. The links carry no
>typing or role information, beyond the unconstrained text that may be found
>between the <A> and </A> tags. HTML offers another hyperlink facility, the
>LINK header element, but it is not widely used.
>Web links support a variety of behaviors, governed by the interaction of the
>"scheme" part of the URL (http:, file:, ftp:, mailto:) and the logic in the
>"User Agent" (typically a browser). It might be argued that there are really
>a smaller number of behaviors (a) retrieve and display, (b) retrieve and save,
>(c) send mail; but the number of behaviors exceeds one.
I would say that the behaviors are more determined by browser: for instance
(at least some versions of) Netscape would display ftp files that contained
HTML, rather than downloading. And nowadays all browsers can change their
behavior based on the content-type (or extension) of the file (regardless
of the protocol used to fetch it). My point is only to agree that we need
an <a> tag, but that the semantics of what it does are pretty inconsistent
and should not overly constrain us. Basically browsers currently guess what
was intended, since there is no link-type information at all.
I am not a number. I am an undefined character.
David Durand email@example.com \ david@dynamicDiagrams.com
Boston University Computer Science \ Sr. Analyst
http://www.cs.bu.edu/students/grads/dgd/ \ Dynamic Diagrams
MAPA: mapping for the WWW \__________________________