Re: To <P> or not to <P>

Stephanos Piperoglou (stephanos@hol.gr)
Sun, 18 Aug 1996 21:06:30 +0300 (EET DST)


Date: Sun, 18 Aug 1996 21:06:30 +0300 (EET DST)
From: Stephanos Piperoglou <stephanos@hol.gr>
To: Paul Prescod <papresco@calum.csclub.uwaterloo.ca>
cc: Brent Eades <beades@ottawa.net>, "Daniel W. Connolly" <connolly@w3.org>,
Subject: Re: To <P> or not to <P> 
In-Reply-To: <199608181653.MAA20120@calum.csclub.uwaterloo.ca>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.3.95.960818210027.106A-100000@trillian.hol.gr>

On Sun, 18 Aug 1996, Paul Prescod wrote:

> Proficient-but-average users are not supposed to worry about specifications.
> They are supposed to use software written by other people who read the
> specifications.
> 
> HTML was supposed to be simple enough that you could hand-code it if you
> were willing to make the investment in learning the specification, but not
> so simple that they can expect to create correct documents WITHOUT reading
> the specification (or a similar document).

But everyone knows that now that everyone is so concerned about
*presentation* there's no way of doing this, because software that lets you
create HTML documents without bothering with the code will mean getting
entangled with things which are supposed to be WYSIWYG but aren't, and
can't.

Unfortunately, today, creating a document that is truly well-designed
requires knowing quite a bit about HTML, otherwise you won't understand what
content markup is and why this page will look different on every user agent.

So there. Initially, HTML is what you described, and in the context of HTML
2.0 (or even HTML 2.0 + stylesheets + tables + client-side image maps + some of
the HTML 3.0 stuff but *without* a lot of the stuff in 3.2) it is still
feasible. But unless you get an editor that says:

"Here is your document. Mark it as you will. You can define headings,
tables, insert some images etc."

"Here is a style sheet. It will dictate how your document will look, but
will not guarantee it will look as you see it."

We won't be getting anywhere.

= Stephanos Piperoglou = stephanos@hol.gr = http://users.hol.gr/~stephanos/ =
  Four lines in a .sig can't say enough about why you should visit my page!
"I want peace on earth and good will toward man"
"We're the United States Government, we don't do that sort of thing!"
                                    [ from the film "Sneakers" ]

                                                       ...oof porothika! (tm)