Tue, 29 Jul 1997 09:24:30 -0500 (EST)

Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 09:24:30 -0500 (EST)
From: Foteos Macrides <MACRIDES@SCI.WFBR.EDU>
Message-id: <01ILSYCPKNWI00517U@SCI.WFBR.EDU>

	The appended message that was posted to, a
fully public and archived ( list,
by Klaus Weide (, the current de-factor coordinator
of Lynx development, is too precious not to be shared with the readers
of  I apologize profusely to any who perceive this as


 Foteos Macrides            Worcester Foundation for Biomedical Research
 MACRIDES@SCI.WFBR.EDU         222 Maple Avenue, Shrewsbury, MA 01545

Subject: Re: LYNX-DEV Should we add a WIP compile time option?

On Mon, 28 Jul 1997, Christopher R. Maden wrote:

> > The Ziff Davis folk have been pushing a Web Interoperability Pledge
> > lately (see
> > <URL:> for a
> > recent article).
> That very page uses Windows CP 1252 characters in the forbidden zone
> of ISO 8859.  I see the novel punctuation "&#151;" where they meant me
> to see an em dash.  Interoperability, you say?  I'll stick with the
> Any Browser initiative at
> <URL:>.

I found this paragraph especially funny:

   Although it seems deceptively simple, it is a powerful way to convince
   vendors to adhere to open standards. By pledging to support only
   official standards, users take away the incentive for vendors to
   &#147;cheat&#148; by introducing proprietary extensions.
Yup, they "cheat" in the very sentence that decries "cheating", by using
proprietary extensions.

But maybe there's hope.  The bottom of the page whose URL appears quoted
above has:

   P.S. We are in the process of redesigning our own site, which will be
   100% WIP compliant. Our new look&#151;complete with the WIP
   logo&#151;will be live soon.

Well, as long as it's only a matter of a new "look" and adding the "WIP
logo" to make a site "100% WIP compliant"...

Anyway, there's only two versions of the "pledge", one for "Webmasters"
and another for "vendors".  We as lynx hackers are neither of those, so
I guess we cannot "take the pledge".  Also, the vendor version goes like
this (complete with the usual proprietary character references OF 
COURSE - no doubt a "powerful way to convince vendors to adhere to open

   &#147;I pledge to support recommended HTML tags as defined by W3C, and
      submit all extensions to HTML to W3C before shipping them.&#148;
How dow we "submit" extensions to W3C?  It seems they are assuming the
only ones who create web software are vendors with the resources to be
members of the Consortium.

(And note:
   "<STRONG>The W3C cannot take individual membership</STRONG>",

There's no place for free software, really, in that worldview.  I assume
a "vendor" has to come along, take pity of a piece of software by
"bundling", "adding value", "making it marketable", and so on, before it
can appear on the "Web Interoperability Pledge"'s radar screen.

Really, they don't mean us.

Also, I haven't seen any complaints that sites "designed for Lynx" exclude
users of other browsers, or are less accessible to them...  or that
non-standard extensions which Lynx supports are a threat to the unity of
the web...