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Re: Default XSL stylesheet for XHTML documents

From: Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@opera.com>
Date: Fri, 13 Oct 2000 11:45:36 +0200 (W. Europe Daylight Time)
Message-ID: <14822.55744.400000.646885@gargle.gargle.HOWL>
To: Steffen Goeldner <s.goeldner@eurodata.de>
Cc: www-style@w3.org, www-svg@w3.org
Also sprach Steffen Goeldner:

 > > http://www.operasoft.com/people/howcome/1999/foch.html
 > 
 > Excellent paper! But let me comment Håkon's thoughts about SVG:
 > 
 > | W3C is developing SVG and the elements defined in the SVG WD
 > | don't have much semantics. They're more like formatting objects.
 > | Aren't they just as harmful? 
 > |
 > | No. Compared to the GIF images SVG will replace, the move
 > | represents an upwards climb on the ladder of abstraction.
 > | XFO, on the other hand, represents a steep downwards step
 > | compared to a CSS-based solution. 
 > 
 >  (I cite via copy/paste. Should I use XPointer instead? ;-)
 > 
 > If GIF is on rung 1, SVG is on rung 3 only. Compare it with
 > DrawML, which was an early submission for web graphic!
 > 
 >  <http://www.w3.org/TR/1998/NOTE-drawml-19981203>
 > 
 > I would place it on rung 5.
 > In DrawML, you can connect nodes via edges and use this
 > semantic for further processing.
 > I SVG, a path may look like an edge (if you have the
 > correct coordinates), but the connection is visual only.
 > The same distinction exists between paint tools and
 > modelling tools.
 > And that's the point! The more semantic, the narrower the
 > room of application. (The higher you climb the ladder, the
 > rarer the air.)

Yes, this is an important observation. I have come to believe there is
an ideal middle point on the ladder where you get the benefits of
simplicity and device-independence, yet don't get into all the special
treatment and advanced transformations required to present highly
abstracted information. "Universality" is a keyword. I believe HTML
(as specified) has found this sweet spot for electronic documents. I
don't think we know the answer for graphics yet, but the submission
you referred to was a useful reminder.

Of course, we also need to have highly semantic formats for special
applications, just as we need JPEG for photographs.

You may also be interested in this paper:

  http://www.opera.com/people/howcome/2000/PODDP/

Cheers,

-h&kon

Chief Technology Officer                                Opera Software
Håkon Wium Lie                     http://www.opera.com/people/howcome
howcome@opera.com                                gets you there faster
Received on Friday, 13 October 2000 05:43:00 GMT

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