Re: HTML 3.0

Mike Meyer (
Wed, 8 May 1996 08:36:40 PST

Subject:  Re: HTML 3.0
In-Reply-To: <Pine.GSO.3.93.960508095336.15779B-100000@cass26>
From: (Mike Meyer)
Date: Wed, 8 May 1996 08:36:40 PST
Message-Id: <>

> Perhaps now we need a separate consortium to be set up to develop HTML
> 3.0, and to co-ordinate developments on the various browsers (Arena,
> Lynx-FM, udiWWW) which are at least partly HTML 3.0 compliant (and
> are FREE). I am not sure  I have the technical knowledge to contribute
> much, and certainly don't have the time, but after the HTML 3.2 fiasco
> we do need something to replace W3C.

I think that's a bit of an overreaction - at least for now. HTML 3.2
describes current practice - or at least part of it. Since current
practice is a mishmash of experiments carried out on the public at
large, it's not going to be any prettier than 2.0. Hopefully, cleaning
up after the parade from the major browser vendors will leave things
in a state from which it's possible to make progress.

The worst thing about HTML 3.2 is the numbering; normally, a higher
number implies more features. Hence, one would expect 3.2 to be an
IMPROVEMENT over HTML 3.0. This isn't the case.

Would someone at W3C like to justify this numbering? Especially when
some wiseacre is bound to misquote that "HTML 3.0 was a great advance
over its successor"?

The VPHTML additions to 3.2 are, for the most part, minor. Lots of
presentation-flavored attributes is ugly, but that's the kind of thing
people sweeping up after a parade have to deal with. FONT is the
character-level tag for style informationt that's been discussed a
number of times, along with more of those ugly attributes. CENTER is
the worst of them, and depreciating that has already been mentioned.
If all those extra attributes are depreciated as well, the results
won't be any worse than HTML 2.0.

Since we're pointing out sillyness with CENTER, I notice that
Microsoft (at <URL: >) claims that
BGSOUND can be CENTER'ed. I'm curious - what exactly does this imply?
It could be interesting for voice presentation software.