Re: The concept of cascading

At 01:46 PM 4/29/97 -0400, Paul Prescod wrote:
>> It seems to me that the department that wants to implement red
>> underlinesfor links can do that
>> by creating a DSSSL style sheet from scratch (or by copying and modifying
>> the company standard one).
>Well, obviously we're dealing with bits and bytes, so it is next to
>to stop someone from hijacking your bytes in CSS or DSSSL. Therefore there
>must be a policy about how stylesheets may be extended. In CSS, that 
>policy must contain a list of things that it is legal to change or not
>change. A person could accidently violate the rule, or do so purposely in
>subtle ways that are hard to detect. In DSSSL the rules are built into the
>corporate stylesheet which could be on a read-only web server. 
>Anyhow, I'm not promoting this as some great feature of DSSSL. I just
>reject the idea that ad hoc cascading is usually better than careful
>parameterization for this sort of departmental customization.

I'm not at all sure of this. Lets say that the corporate creative services
creates a style sheet for internal use that sets up some default fonts,
backgrounds, etc.
Lets also say, that the engineering department publishes specifications on
an internal web site.
They might want to use the corporate style sheet, but it is quite unlikley,
that the creative
service group could anticipate and properly handle the formatting needs of
code samples
and other elements that only occur in technical documents.

It strikes me that the whole point of DSSSL and CSS (to a lesser extent) is
that no
group is going to be able to anticipate all the needs of all document
authors. I think
this applies to corporate creative services departments as much as it
applies to 
standards committees. 

Another example, is that a fortune 500 multi-national corporation might
have a standard
style sheet that puts there logo in the background as a watermark and uses
a corporate standard
font, but the legal department might have requirements to use specific font
sizes and weights
for certain parts of legal documents that they post.