Re: <math>, <fig>, ... (fwd)

Benjamin C. W. Sittler (bsittler@mailhost.nmt.edu)
Tue, 14 May 1996 21:11:10 -0600 (MDT)


Date: Tue, 14 May 1996 21:11:10 -0600 (MDT)
From: "Benjamin C. W. Sittler" <bsittler@mailhost.nmt.edu>
To: Fisher Mark <FisherM@is3.indy.tce.com>
Cc: www-html <www-html@www10.w3.org>
Subject: Re: <math>, <fig>, ... (fwd)
In-Reply-To: <31988CAA@MSMAIL.INDY.TCE.COM>
Message-Id: <Pine.SUN.3.91.960514205021.18602A-100000@rust>

On Tue, 14 May 1996, Fisher Mark wrote:

> Benjamin C. W. Sittler writes in 
> <Pine.SUN.3.91.960511140515.20396A-100000@rust>:
> >I think maybe it's time for some other group to control the
> >standardization of HTML for serious use.
> 
> <flameproof (flamebait?)>
hardly ;>
> I really wish we all would stop using "serious" as an alias for 
> "scientific/technical/academic".  There are plenty of webmasters both out on 
> the Internet and within Intranets who are using the Web and HTML for serious 
> uses that are not scientific/technical/academic uses.  These people are not 
> just playing around; if the trade publications are to be believed, at least 
> some companies are investing heavily in serious Web/HTML applications that 
> are not entertainment applications _and_ are not 
> scientific/technical/academic applications.
> 
> Let's not justify our existences by pretending that the rest of the world is 
> just playing games, while we are the only people doing "serious" work.
> </flameproof>
> 
> My background on this issue is that I maintain 3 Web internally (a CAD tools 
> web, my Corporate Technical Memory electronic reference document repository, 
> and our ISO 9001 web).  I have also rendered assistance to the people 
> working on TCE's Internet Web presence at <URL:http://www.nipper.com/>.  All 
> of these are "serious" endeavors.

I agree completely. What I meant when I wrote 'serious' was anyone 
writing documents that they still want to be readable (by both humans 
*and* software) two or five years down the line. I want a solid SGML DTD 
for HTML, a good basic HTML stylesheet in dsssl-o, and at least one good
browser/renderer (this should be free software). Commercial versions 
offering more features (like better stylesheets and full dsssl 
support) would be great. I would like most if not all of the features of 
HTML 3.0. For this to happen we need a standard (or at least an 
informational RFC) describing the basic features needed for serious HTML 
publishing. Something based on the modular 3.0 DTD would be ideal.

What I consider basic for "serious" HTML publishing is a standard DTD 
against which to validate ("if it doesn't validate it's not HTML") and 
standard semantics for the elements in the DTD, layout and otherwise. 
This would guarantee interoperability.

I am currently investigating dsssl-o as a first step towards writing a
server-side version of the above that would render into
Netscape-"HTML"/HTML 3.2. First we need a good portable dsssl-o
interpreter. 

Academia is just one of the "markets" for such a system. Anyone desiring 
true interoperability needs this, and it doesn't exist!

Benjamin C. W. Sittler