Re: [dgd@cs.bu.edu: BOS confusion (analysis; suggestion to resolve Newcomb/Bryan conflict)]

At 17:40 1/1/97 -0500, Steven R. Newcomb wrote:

>Thanks for your help, David.  I've been pretty boggled by that
>discussion, and I'd like to apologize to Martin for any offense.

No offence given or taken Steve. I enjoy a good argument, especially when I
am in the role of the Devil's advocate, as I often am:-)

>But doesn't this mean you must have all this already-redundant
>information kept in synchronized copies all over the place?  Sounds
>like a dreadful and unnecessary hyperdocument maintenance headache.

This is why I want the link information decoupled from the rest of the
document in a way that will allow it to be referenced from any start-point
(hub) document that needs to reference it. That way I can set up one easily
maintainable link set and point all my documents to it. Ideally what I would
then love to be able to do is to prune this application BOS from within the
called document so that I can get the most efficient effective BOS for the
current user. For my, somewhat unusual, web pages I would want this done
under author control rather than user control as I can easily identify how
to prune the well-maintained tree.

>Ouch!  Also, doesn't this mean that an author can't specify companion
>documents that he can't write on?  Sounds impractical.

To me there is a clear distinction between "what is essential" (i.e. defined
in the application BOS as documents that are specifically referenced as
transclusion type references) and what could be added if the user has time
to get them in the background (i.e. defined in the companion documents). The
first list defines the set of entities that must be retrieved before
starting the session (i.e. those likely to result in delay), the second
defines the set that the system can usefully pre-fetch during any spare
system cycles while the author is reading the file. The second set of
documents may not have links pointed at specifically from the hub document:
it could just be a set of files that are referenced in bibliographic
entries. In this case you don't need to write on the second set. (There will
of course, be cases where you do, so we need some mechanism to whereby we
have dynamic linking to documents once they have been retrieved, as a
background operation.)

Martin Bryan, The SGML Centre, Churchdown, Glos. GL3 2PU, UK 
Phone/Fax: +44 1452 714029   WWW home page: http://www.u-net.com/~sgml/