Re: HTML 3.2

Paul Prescod (papresco@itrc.uwaterloo.ca)
Wed, 8 May 1996 12:56:08 -0400


Date: Wed, 8 May 1996 12:56:08 -0400
Message-Id: <199605081656.MAA20944@itrc.uwaterloo.ca>
To: "Daniel W. Connolly" <connolly@beach.w3.org>
From: Paul Prescod <papresco@itrc.uwaterloo.ca>
Subject: Re: HTML 3.2 
Cc: www-html@w3.org

At 12:05 PM 5/8/96 -0400, Daniel W. Connolly wrote:
>>As I mentioned in another message, that's great for W3C, but I don't see
>>what it does for the _Web_.
>
>Point taken. I'll stipulate that HTML 3.2 adds little value to the web
>in and of itself. But as you say: it's great for W3C. It puts us in a
>leadership position, which is where we need to be in order to get
>style sheets, <OBJECT>, forms enhancements, etc. deployed.

A leadership position? How does standardizing Netscape tags put W3C in a
leadership position? It seems to me that it puts Netscape in a leadership
position. I'm not being faceitious or trying to be obtuse. Netscape has the
leadership position in mass market HTML development and I don't see how HTML
3.2 changes that. C|Net agrees:

"But the organization acknowledges that the new 
specification's main additions--including tables, the applet tag, and text
flow around images--were originally developed as proprietary HTML
extensions by the two leading browser vendors and have already been
widely deployed through Internet Explorer and Navigator."

"The W3C is continuing to work, however, on future versions of the
HTML standard, which will support multimedia objects, scripting,
style sheets, layout, and higher quality printing."

I interpret this as: "W3C is behind the times in standardizing this old
stuff, but they may yet take the lead, because they have some advanced stuff
under development." 

Why waste your time with the old stuff? Let's move directly to the "advanced
stuff". In particular, a "platform for experimentation" will allow both de
facto and de jure standards to advance much more quickly. The mass market
will get what they want, (<FASTBLINK>) more quickly and the specialized
markets (<MATH>) will get what they want more quickly.

 Paul Prescod