Re: Auto-Generated HTML and Authoring Tools

Paul Prescod (
Wed, 29 Jan 1997 19:37:38 -0500 (EST)

From: Paul Prescod <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Re: Auto-Generated HTML and Authoring Tools
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 19:37:38 -0500 (EST)
Cc:, czimmerm@NMSU.Edu,,
In-Reply-To: <> from "Linas Vepstas" at Jan 29, 97 07:06:29 pm

> The problem is an ancient one: Programmer wants to generate HTML
> automatically. The actual HTML generated depends on some formula, the
> contents of a database, and the lunar calander.  Programmer's buddy is
> an artist, and is going to make the HTML purty. Programmer doesn't want
> to give the artist his raw C++/perl code, so instead creates
> a pseudo-html thing which is almost pure html, except that it has
> "variables" or "paramters" that the program will automatically fill
> in with the right values.  Problem: the artist's WYSIWYG html tool
> doesn't understand the pseudo-html extensions.  What to do?

HTML is a language based on SGML, a meta-language. SGML can define
an infinite number of different languages, including HTML plus your
funny extra data types. There are several HTML extensions defined
this way. There are several WYSIWYGish tools that can work with the
documents in this way (SoftQuad Author/Editor, Emacs PSGML, InContext
2, Arbortext AdeptEditor, etc.).

Despite the fact that this has always been the case and that people
are doing this now, you might be interested to know that a subset
of SGML (a simpler subset) is being standardized by the W3C so 
there may one day be even more choice of editors and tools. In the
meantime, though, the SGML tools do an excellent job.

 Paul Prescod