Re: New tags. (fwd) -Reply (fwd)

Jim Wise (jw250@columbia.edu)
Sat, 8 Feb 1997 22:46:40 -0500 (EST)


Date: Sat, 8 Feb 1997 22:46:40 -0500 (EST)
From: Jim Wise <jw250@columbia.edu>
To: Dave Carter <dxc@ast.cam.ac.uk>
cc: Subir Grewal <subir@crl.com>, HTML Discussion List <www-html@w3.org>
Subject: Re: New tags. (fwd) -Reply (fwd)
In-Reply-To: <Pine.GSO.3.94.970207091127.14059C-100000@cass26>
Message-ID: <Pine.SUN.3.95L.970208222612.25744A-100000@konichiwa.cc.columbia.edu>

On Fri, 7 Feb 1997, Dave Carter wrote:

> Not even arena supports all of html 3.0, it doesn't support <banner> for
> instance. However I don't see why arena should be a dead end, its still
> the most advanced graphical browser. I don't have the time or the ability
> to do anything with it, but I am sure someone will.

The vague hope that someone may eventually have time to support more of HTML
3.0 is _hardly_ a justification for writing in it.  As I said before, the
purpose of HTML is platform and browser independence.  At this point, one
browser supports `most' of HTML 3.0 (arena) and another supports those parts
of HTML 3.0 that are conveinient in a non-graphical environment (lynx).  In
contrast, HTML 3.2, as a standard, is supported by almost all current browsers,
and it is safe to expect that all new browsers will support it.  The same
will be true of Cougar, if it makes it through the standardization process.
The fact that your favorite toy DTD, be it HTML 3.0, HTML Pro, or MSIE HTML,
might have a feature set you prefer simply is not of much value when it comes
to promoting the cross-platform inter-operability that makes HTML such a
useful and powerful technology.

> HTML 3.2 is at the same stage that HTML 3.0 was at two years ago, except

Nonsense.  HTML 3.2 is a W3C standard ('recommendation').  HTML 3.0 never
made it that far, and never will.

> for two things, first it is less sophisticated therefore less difficult
> to implement, and second two particular manufacturers have paid W3C money
> to make sure that their dross replaces some of the advanced features of
> HTML 3.0. Why should browser manufacturers implement it except for two??

Again, this accusation is groundless, and insulting.  Even a cursory look
at the W3C's record will show that it's past and present standardization
efforts have strove to provide clean approaches to the features users,
authors, _and_ browser implementors demand, rather than bowing to the
toy feature sets of the big browser vendors.  Where are W3c frames? <BLINK>?
<MARQUEE>?  What browser manufacturer pushed for CSS1?  PICS?  <OBJECT>?
Yet now, you are asking that the W3C abandon this goal because it has
rejected a browser-dependent feature set that you like...

> implement in a cross-platform way. Not having cross-platform
> compatibility may be seen as being in the commercial interest of a
> particular country. For this reason I feel that the consultation process
> must be wider than W3C, and must be international. ISO would provide an
> appropriate framework.

Naturally, any body is welcome to enter the standardization fray.  The fact
is, they haven't.  The W3C, however, has done an admirable job of promoting
platform independence and interoperability, and of providing a clean,
consistent standardization of those features most requested by authors,
browser implementors, and users.

--
				Jim Wise
				jim@santafe.arch.columbia.edu
				http://www.arch.columbia.edu/~jim
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