W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > January 2001

Re: WWW: Interoperability Crisis?

From: David Meadows <david@heroes.force9.co.uk>
Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 09:46:30 -0000
Message-ID: <009c01c08392$73bd3ee0$a0159fd4@astra>
To: "Sean B. Palmer" <sean@mysterylights.com>, "Aaron Swartz" <aswartz@swartzfam.com>, <www-talk@w3.org>
Cc: <www-html@w3.org>
I'll just jump in here if nobody objects...

"Sean B. Palmer" <sean@mysterylights.com> wrote:

> [...] It was originally a scientific document
> format, but got evolved into Hyper*Media* Markup Language. But no-one paid
> any thought with how best to integrate media and HyperText, so they just
> thought "oh, we'll embed it in the doucment"... and there you have it.
> Personally, I'd ban <img> and <script> from XHTML, but there you go.
> Doesn't top you using <a> or <object>, does it?

First define the objective that HTML is trying to achieve (to make
scientific documents available on line). Then look at what a scientific
document *is* and decide how you will achieve that objective.

I have a few technical journals here. I'll see what they contain:

(1) Text.
(2) Images (charts and pictures) *embedded in* the text.

To properly model the documents, I would need the <img> tag that you want to
ban. You want me to use <a> instead? But my technical articles integrate
images and text on the same page. The text refers to the pictures. They are
an integrated whole. Yet in effect you want me to say "now close this
journal and open the accompanying picture book. Memorise the picture. Then
close that book and come back here so I can explain what you have just been
looking at."

HTML, right from its inception, was, according to its stated purpose, a tool
for displaying multimedia content. It accomplished this task very poorly
until graphical browsers and the <img> tag came along. And now you want to
take that away?

David Meadows [ Technical Writer | Information Developer ]
DNRC Minister for Littorasy * david@heroes.force9.co.uk
Assorted essays: www.themestream.com/authors/87004.html

"Nothing is too wonderful to be true."
   -- Michael Faraday
Received on Sunday, 21 January 2001 05:12:43 UTC

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