Re: HTML is declarative on purpose [was: Web neurons ]

Walter Ian Kaye (boo@best.com)
Thu, 30 May 1996 00:58:57 -0700


Message-Id: <v03006f04add300c9f8e1@[205.149.180.135]>
In-Reply-To: <199605300250.DAA24152@power1.powernet.co.uk>
Date: Thu, 30 May 1996 00:58:57 -0700
To: www-html@w3.org
From: Walter Ian Kaye <boo@best.com>
Subject: Re: HTML is declarative on purpose [was: Web neurons ]
Cc: hyper-theory@math.byu.edu

At 3:50a +0100 05/30/96, John Middlemas wrote:
>Yes, there is no way the indexer could easily sort out the vast number of different database formats, applets etc. So what is the answer here? The whole system is a bloody mess, in need of a severe amount of pruning and a major rethink.
>
>To recap then - HTML is declarative on purpose i.e. to avoid indexing problems. But there still are indexing problems even so! - as Scott points out. So then there is no reason HTML should not progress to turing completeness.
>
>In my opinion the answer to it all is to bring everything under one hat so you don't have the problem of dissimilar database format, applets etc. Now the Web IS a database already - a database of pages - If we make the size of a page small enough until it holds say only one item e.g. a Name or an Address then we have the basic element on which to build a database of the conventional type. This may sound radical but I think the possibility should be explored.

You're not a database developer, are you. <G>


>A simple database of records with several fields could be modelled if you link the small page elements correctly and HTML is good at links. Access and editing of the database could also be handled by HTML if it was turing complete. 
>Also, it would be fully indexable! 
>
>I honestly think it may be just sitting there in front of our noses.

I'd rather store my data in a relational database than a flat-file database.
With a choice between, say, Perl and FoxPro/Xbase, I sure won't choose Perl!

The best solution would be for the maintainer of the database to generate an HTML file (or files) containing keywords for indexing plus links to the forms-interface pages for getting the "real" data. Naturally these files should be refreshed periodically to reflect changes in the database.

-Walter

__________________________________________________________________________
    Walter Ian Kaye <boo@best.com>     Programmer - Excel, AppleScript,
          Mountain View, CA                         ProTERM, FoxPro, HTML
 http://www.natural-innovations.com/     Musician - Guitarist, Songwriter