Re: There Are No Metadocuments

Jon Bosak writes:
>  The problem I'm having with a distinction between behavior and
>  appearance is that it just won't stay nailed down.  Most behavior can
>  be (and is) described with regard to an appearance, and most
>  appearances are the result of some behavior.  Peter has a system that
>  uses Java code to perform (among other things) the formatting
>  functions that in some other system might be expressed in a
>  stylesheet.  Is that behavior or appearance?
>  [example deleted]

On the one hand, Yes.  That is, rendering (creating an appearance for
a medium, e.g. 256 colour raster display) is behaviour.  It can be
specified by appeal to less (LaTeX) or more (DSSSL) or most (Java)
procedural means, but processing is always involved or implied.

On the other hand No.  That is, it is attractive to suppose that
rendering behaviour will treat link descriptions in the same way
as the rest of the markup in a document, encouraging us to use the
same mechanism, namely style specifications, to determine rendering
behaviour for link descriptions as we do for the rest of the document.

The SGML Way is to use DSSSL for this when you can.  It remains to be
seen whether this group thinks that XSL (= an XML-targeted DSSSL
subset) will do the job, or whether augmentations will be necessary.
I for one would NOT be happy if such augmentations took us outside the
domain of rendering into e.g. user interactions.

In other words, all rendering is processing, but not all processing is
rendering, and specifying ALL processing needs a general-purpose
programming language.  SMF, TNMJ.