Product Differentiation (was Re: ReComments on Cougar DTD:)

Walter Ian Kaye (
Mon, 22 Jul 1996 12:10:49 -0700

Message-Id: <v03007802ae1977f4204e@[]>
In-Reply-To: <>
Date: Mon, 22 Jul 1996 12:10:49 -0700
From: Walter Ian Kaye <>
Subject: Product Differentiation (was Re: ReComments on Cougar DTD:)

At 10:31a -0400 07/22/96, Paul Prescod wrote:

>Microsoft describes it thus:
>"Previous proprietary HTML extensions from Microsoft and other vendors have
>confused the market, hampered interoperability and been ill-conceived with
>respect to the design principles underlying HTML (and its SGML parent)."
>Hopefully now that Microsoft has admitted the error of their ways, W3C will
>have the courage to deprecate the formatting nasties in Cougar.

Yes. Proprietary tags is not the way browsers should be differentiated.
Here is a list of things I expect from a MacOS browser:

  * Aesthetic rendering of markup (Nav beats IE)
  * Fast/fluid response (IE beats Nav)
  * Professionally-designed UI (Nav 3.0b3 and later beat all)
  * Extra niceties (IE's History Editor)
  * Support for OS technologies:
    -- Drag and Drop (Nav partially implements, IE has barely begun)
    -- Apple events (partially implemented in Nav and IE)
       (provide JavaScript functionality in AppleScript?)
    -- Apple Guide (hello?)
    -- OpenDoc (NCC has paid lip service; we'll see...)
    -- Thread Manager (IE implements; probably why it's more fluid)
  * Nix the newsreader and email; NewsWatcher and Eudora are better
    (and please reduce the software's ram+disk footprint accordingly)
  * Flush history/bookmarks/prefs to disk regularly (hello?)
  * Provide support for schizophrenic ftp://....html servers, so that
    non-html ftp's can go to a protocol helper while html ftp's are
    automatically handled by the browser. (Ok, this one is wish-list)

I suppose Unicode and CSS support go without saying... ;)

This is all off the top of my head; I'm probably forgetting a lot.
(I didn't even mention stability, hehehehehe)

With all these things to work on, why would any browser vendor be wasting
time inventing new proprietary tags?

    Walter Ian Kaye <>     Programmer - Excel, AppleScript,
          Mountain View, CA                         ProTERM, FoxPro, HTML     Musician - Guitarist, Songwriter