Re: What are the problems with IDML?

Alex Neth (
Fri, 16 Aug 1996 18:32:10 -0700

Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 16 Aug 1996 18:32:10 -0700
From: Alex Neth <>
Subject: Re: What are the problems with IDML?

> The IDML thing is trying to cram into HTML what should exist outside HTML.
> META is trying to standardize use of a limited HTML element for a somewhat
> complex task.
> I could see making an IDML metainformation a first-class object
>(essentially a
> peer of a document) using <LINK REV="IDML" HREF="/xxxxx.idml"> to do what
> they're saying.  But schemes that glom together documents and their metadata
> won't scale for large, high-value-added collections.

This is an issue affecting scaling as well as convenience that IDML
address which META tags do not.  IDML need never be transfered to an
agent that does not request it if the publisher has separated the IDML
into an IDML specific file (like site.idml or idml.html).

This is a fairly simple issue that has been solved using the
"URL-REDIRECT" attrbute of IDML tags.  Perhaps a <LINK REV="IDML"
HREF="/site.idml"> would be in order so that indexing information could
be found from the source document rather than only the other way around.

IDML can scale beyond META tags for the reasons you mention above;
metadata does not have to be crammed into HTML documents.  IDML uses an
HTML structure because of it's familiarity and acceptance, but IDML may
exist outside of an HTML document.

Perhaps you could elaborate a bit on the last sentence.  With these
points I have made above in mind, does IDML address the issue of
combining documents with their metadata.  Where could it fall short?


Alex Neth		| Software Architect	| Emerge Consulting
Emerge Consulting