Re: Footnotes in HTML

Carl Johan Berglund (
Fri, 26 Apr 1996 13:56:27 +0200

Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 26 Apr 1996 13:56:27 +0200
From: Carl Johan Berglund <>
To: Francois Stragier <>
Subject: Re: Footnotes in HTML

Francois Stragier wrote:
>   For a "long" time, I want to be able to use footnotes in HTML.
> I don't know any easy way to get it, so I propose an extension
> to HTML, that would make it easy to replace footnotes.
>   By the way, I propose a way to have syntax highlighting in HTML
> (for C, Perl etc.) that would help some programmers who find that
> the <CODE> tag isn't enough.
>   I won't explain it here, but you can go and see at:

Hi Francois,

I've read your well-written proposal, and I have a few comments.
First, the addition of a LANGUAGE qualifier to the <CODE> element.
I think this is an excellent idea. It doesn't ask much of a change
to the HTML specification, but it gives a lot. What should be part
of the standard is not how to highlight the syntax, but only that
the author can specify the language of the code written between
the <CODE LANGUAGE="C++"> and the </CODE>. Browsers can then choose
to highlight the code in any way they want. 

One of the possible values of LANGUAGE should of course be HTML.

Concerning the <POPUP> element, I think I saw a similar proposal
in the now expired HTML 3.0 draft - <NOTE>. IMHO, we should aviod
elements that assume the browser to be in a window in a graphical
user interface. Always think about how the markup could be rendered
in a text-to-speech or braille browser! 

The word NOTE describe the role of the text inside, not how it
should be displayed in any specific environment, but graphical
browsers are encouraged to display it in a popup window.

I don't think that we should worry to much about appearence in
older browsers, given that we are diskussing a new HTML specifi-
cation, and not a few extensions to implement in a browser. A 
new spec is likely to contain elements that don't work too well
with older browsers anyway. I want a consistent standard, not 
many loose extensions. At least not until I have a browser that
can read an arbitrary SGML DTD, a style sheet and a document,
and display the document correct according to both teh DTD and
the style sheet.

Carl Johan Berglund <>