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Re: Math on the web without MathML (CSS 2.1 rendering for HTML and XML)

From: Patrick Ion <ion@ams.org>
Date: Thu, 13 Jul 2006 13:13:50 -0400
Message-Id: <2B45132D-C230-4ACB-AE50-A941CCEA59B1@ams.org>
Cc: <www-math@w3.org>
To: "<juanrgonzaleza@canonicalscience.com>" <juanrgonzaleza@canonicalscience.com>


Dear Juan,

I certainly don't quarrel either with the quotation from Hutchinson of
<blockquote>
MathML has a number of weaknesses.
</blockquote>
or, in fact, with the assertion.  Nor is there a problem for me with his
<blockquote>
My guess is that it won’t. But with luck it will gradually become more
widespread.
</blockquote>
That's his prognosis and a benevolent wish.  I could quibble over how
big a niche might be, but I am not clear how MathML could
'take over web mathematics publishing' at the present stage of
web technology.  I'm not sure CSS has correspondingly taken
over web page styling, though it's a lot wider in scope than
MathML as a markup.

Where I questioned the attribution to Hutchinson was for
the phrasing

> we abandon the MathML approach, encourage to all us users,
> collaborators, and visitors to abandon MathML,

but I now see that perhaps you intended to convey in
http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-math/2006Jul/0028.html
not that sense of attribution to IH, but that you wished to correct
your typo by
us users ==> our users

So the syntax form of your message was, in outline,

Typos ...
 > A
may read
B
with
C
instead
 >D

and might have been in another notation

Typos:
A ==> B
D ==> C

This perhaps illustrates the difficulties of markup without
specifications.

Are you really proposing to explore examples such as
you have in

> For instance, the recently
> proposed at the HTML5 mailing list
> <frac>a<den>2</frac>
> also works with CSS, even if is *not* valid xml. Ok?

Obviously one can work with other markup than valid XML.
It just does not seem to me a very good idea in this
context today.  Any revision to a MathML spec will have to be
consonant with other prevalent W3C specs, I believe, as the
previous versions were at their times.

All the best,

	Patrick
Received on Thursday, 13 July 2006 17:14:01 GMT

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