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RE: Lingua Franca of the Web - Will SVG replace HTML?

From: Bill dehOra <BdehOra@interx.com>
Date: Wed, 24 Jan 2001 09:55:34 -0000
Message-ID: <23CF4BF2C499D411907E00508BDC95E131F894@ntmews_01.interx.com>
To: "'Dave J Woolley'" <david.woolley@bts.co.uk>, "'www-html@w3.org'" <www-html@w3.org>, "'www-talk@w3.org'" <www-talk@w3.org>

:-----Original Message-----
:From: Dave J Woolley [mailto:david.woolley@bts.co.uk]
:Sent: 22 January 2001 19:35
:To: 'www-html@w3.org'; 'www-talk@w3.org'
:Subject: RE: Lingua Franca of the Web - Will SVG replace HTML?
:> From:	Sean B. Palmer [SMTP:sean@mysterylights.com]
:> By all means, use SVG in XHTML: Amaya does this now, but as 
:for replacing
:> XHTML with SVG... I don't see how that would even be 
:possible. Telling
:> people to use SVG in that way would be beyond the scope of SVG as a
:> format,
:> and I certainly do not think this is a line the W3C would 
:want to take up
:> with their data formats. It doesn't make architectural 
:sense. The future
:> lies in Semantics, not pretty pictures :-)

SVG does not preclude machine semantics (it's just XML after all), so that's
not a sound argument: it has no more or no less semantic capacity than HTML.
SVG has compelling economic efficiencies for certain industries, notably
print, engineering and advertising that make it a no brainer file format: it
has roles far beyond browser delivery. So I don't know what you mean by
architectural sense.

:	[DJW:]  
:	I'm afraid that upwards of 95% of the decision makers on
:	the design of public web sites have no interest in 
:	the machine readable document representing the semantics.
:	Other than the vagaries of mass psychology, I think the
:	only thing that will stop SVG becoming the language of 
:	choice for web pages will be commercial factors such 
:	as the inclusion of correct and complete implementations
:	in popular browsers - these are the sort of things that
:	have prevented CSS, and therefore HTML 4 strict, standing
:	a chance.  (Accessibility legislation might act against
:	it as well, but there is little sign of real impact yet.)

I'm inclined to agree with this. For a start, it's very difficult to imagine
SVG engines being consistent or compliant, on the extrapolation that if
browser vendors can't implement CSS properly, there's no chance they'll
implment SVG properly. That doesn't mean SVG won't be used, abused and
overloaded over html by business folk who want sites that use look like
Flash (which is experiencing something of a boom). Of course it will.
Business cares about business value, not data formats. Three reasons that
90% of business site are not in Flash already are perhaps 1: it's more
complex than straight html (you need a graphics geek) 2: you have to pay for
the tools 3: it's a plugin. SVG helps to remove obstacles 2 and 3. 

SVG turns web pages inside out: you can embed text in an image instead of
embedding an image in text.

Bill de hÓra  :  InterX  :  bdehora@interx.com
Received on Wednesday, 24 January 2001 07:42:19 UTC

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