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Re: Final CFP: In-Use Track ISWC 2013

From: Sarven Capadisli <info@csarven.ca>
Date: Thu, 02 May 2013 19:38:18 +0200
Message-ID: <5182A48A.2070803@csarven.ca>
To: public-lod@w3.org
On 05/02/2013 06:55 PM, Norman Gray wrote:
> I'm now thoroughly confused by this conversation.

Allow me to summarize: "Linked Science is brought to you by PDF" [1]

> Talking about LaTeX...
>
> On 2013 May 2, at 17:02, phillip.lord@newcastle.ac.uk (Phillip Lord)
> wrote:
>
>> Sebastian Hellmann <hellmann@informatik.uni-leipzig.de> writes:
>>
>>> Plus it is widely used and quite good for PDF typesetting.
>>
>> And sucks on the web, which is a shame. If I could get good HTML
>> out of it, I would be a happy man.
>
> _What_ sucks on the web?  Certainly not PDF.

HTML/Web, PDF/Desktop?

> There are hassles with PDFs, yes.  In particular, (i) embedding
> metadata is underdeveloped (XMP is undertooled), and (ii)
> deep-linking into PDFs could be better, as has been discussed.  HTML
> is naturally better at both of these, but neither is a real problem.
> (i) between DOIs and metadata from journal webpages, most of the
> important stuff is available without major difficulty, and various
> organisations (eg ORCID) are labouring away at making a very messy
> problem better.  (ii) would be nice to solve (and perhaps Utopiadocs
> is the way to do it), but doesn't, as far as I can see, offer major
> advantages beyond 'See sect. xxx'.  Most text is, after all, consumed
> by humans, and articles tend not to be tens of pages long.
>
> Thus HTML can do some unimportant things better than PDF,

Web pages. It will never take off.

but what it
> can't do, which _is_ important, is make things readable.  The visual
> appearance -- that is, the typesetting -- of rendered HTML is almost
> universally bad, from the point of view of reading extended pieces.
> I haven't (I admit) yet experimented with reading extended text on a
> tablet, but I'd be surprised if that made a major difference.

I think you are conflating the job of HTML with CSS. Also, I think you 
are conflating readability with legibility as far as the typesetting 
goes. Again, that's something CSS handles provided that suitable fonts 
are in use. What you are probably viewing on an average webpage is the 
common "works on most machines" fonts e.g., Arial. I don't know whether 
the PDF reader for instance does magic behind the scenes to smooth 
things out or crisp things up - whatever additional instructions it may 
have. Needless to say, this is the job of the reader AFICT. If you put 
the effort into CSS, it might just give something pretty.

I'll also admit that I have not experimented with the exact differences 
in quality.

> Also, HTML is not the same as linked data; there's no 'dog food' here
> for us to eat.

That's quite a generalization there? So, I would argue that "HTML" is 
more about eating dogfood in the Linked Data mailing list than parading 
on PDF. We are trying to build things one step at a time; HTML today, a 
URI that it can sit on tomorrow. Additional machine-friendly stuff the 
day after.

So, if conferences want to promote PDF, perhaps they should jump over to 
public-lod-pdf-print-industry-and-friends mailing list? :)

> Is it possible that folk here are conflating 'LaTeX' with the quite
> startlingly ugly ACM style?  That's almost as unreadable as HTML.

Nothing to do with HTML unless you are thinking of loading the default 
browser styles and using that as the measure for readability.

[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-lod/2013Apr/0291.html

-Sarven


Received on Thursday, 2 May 2013 17:38:49 UTC

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