Date: Wed, 24 Jul 1996 01:45:02 -0700 From: Thomas Breuel <firstname.lastname@example.org> Message-Id: <199607240845.BAA13166@shellx.best.com> To: email@example.com Subject: structural markup William F. Hammond writes in <199607192237.SAA25716@phoebe.math.albany.edu>: >5. HTML is not really very "structural". For example, the SENTENCE > is not something that is recognized in HTML. Does it make sense > to make HTML-Math more structural than HTML overall? Yes, it does. Math proposals need to be evaluated on their own merit, not relative to whether they are more or less structural than the rest of HTML. The purpose of structural information in HTML/SGML is to allow better indexing/searching, and to allow formatting across a wide range of devices. On the other hand, requiring extra structural information makes it harder and much costlier to input and to convert existing documents. You have to strike a balance; more structural markup isn't intrinsically better. Eventually, HTML will give way to full SGML, and use of vi(1) and other non-GUI editors (for non-casual editing) will give way to GUI, HTML/SGML-aware editors that will enable easier use of structural markup. The fact remains that requiring more structural markup results in higher costs for input and conversion, relative to less structural markup. Tools only affect the baseline. There is no reason to believe that GUI tools will make structural input for math so easy that the cost becomes negligible; in fact, based on my experience with GUI and non-GUI tools for math input, if anything, the opposite is true. Thomas.