Re: HTML should not be a file format, but an output format

Paul Prescod (
Mon, 24 Mar 1997 19:44:16 -0500

Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 24 Mar 1997 19:44:16 -0500
From: Paul Prescod <>
Subject: Re: HTML should not be a file format, but an output format

Steven Champeon wrote:
> Businesses don't have time nor inclination to wait for promises to
> become realized.

It isn't clear what the benefit of complaining about historic
disappoints are. Clearly SGML has to this point been primarily used by
Very Large Companies and Governments who would rather wait to do the the
thing Right than to do it today Wrong. The success of SGML in those
markets is a clear validation of that strategy.

Businesses have had Lotus Notes and HTML as ways of doing simple
hypertext while they wait for SGML to mature as the more powerful "big
brother." Now the SGML community wants to move mainstream and has moved
incredibly quickly over the last year to standardize an
SGML-for-the-masses, and HyTime-for-the-masses. DSSSL for the masses is
well under development and will be formalized soon.

Note also, that there is a working DSSSL implementations that support
most of the Style Language, despite the fact that DSSSL was standardized
after CSS (as I recall), and DSSSL is much more advanced and thus hard
to implement than CSS. Only partial implementations of CSS exist as
well, and the DSSSL implementation is available *with source code* for
implementation in all number of products, and other DSSSL
implementations for Java and Scheme are under development.

So what's the problem again?

 Paul Prescod