W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > April 1996

Re: CSS and SGML document formatting -Reply

From: Gavin Nicol <gtn@ebt.com>
Date: Wed, 24 Apr 1996 22:55:52 -0400
Message-Id: <199604250255.WAA29156@ebt-inc.ebt.com>
To: rieger@bse.de
Cc: TFRETER@novell.com, www-style@w3.org
>IMO, wether CSS is good enough for general SGML usage cannot be
>decided by a committee. If CSS is extended to support arbitrary DTDs
>and people who are using CSS style sheets for their HTML documents
>start using CSS for SGML formatting and do not start using DSSSL-O,
>then the users will have decided.

I agree that end users make the final decision, but on the other hand,
I can tell you right now that CSS, as currently defined, simply cannot
be used to format arbitrary SGML, and the changes required to make it
even capable of doing so (which is different to being useful if it is
possible to do so), would be incompatible with almost everything
written so far.
 
>For me "extended CSS" may be good enough to specify formatting for
>conversion of SGML to
>- RTF
>- WinHelp RTF
>- paginated formatted line printer output (like nroff)
>- text display output
>- TeX
>and similar formats. And I do not think that very much has to be done.
>But I may be wrong.

You are wrong.
 
>As a practical solution for HTML, CSS appears to have generated more
>industrial interest than DSSSL-O at the moment.

For HTML, fine, I have no problems with CSS being targetted for that
usage, but let's not pretend that it is suitable for anything else.
 
>I was tempted to implement CSS1, I was not tempted to impliment DSSSL.
>I was rather intimidated by DSSSL :-) And it is hard to pronounce,
>too.

This is part of the problem. People don't understand DSSSL, or are
intimidated by it, because they don't understand the problem it's
trying to solve to the level of detail the designers of DSSSL do. 

I think that CSS and HTML will be used for a while, but eventually, I
think that they *must* become as complex as the other solutions.

CSS is small, it's easy. Anybody can work with, or design something
like it. The one thing is is *not* is suitable as a general-purpose
stylesheet language for large scale publishing of structured
documents. 
Received on Wednesday, 24 April 1996 22:57:31 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0+W3C-0.50 : Monday, 27 April 2009 13:53:44 GMT