W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-sgml-wg@w3.org > October 1996

Re: Acceptance of XML

From: Bill Smith <bill.smith@Eng.Sun.COM>
Date: Wed, 2 Oct 1996 13:54:08 -0700 (PDT)
To: w3c-sgml-wg@w3.org
Message-ID: <libSDtMail.9610021354.31591.bsmith@providence>
Len Bullard wrote:

> This is eminently sensible.  But that can be viewed as 
> "We already have HTML, why do we need this?".  I don't wish to be 
> tendentious, but XML is not the natural evolution of HTML.  HTML is
> in a species of DTDs which some of us have created prior to HTML. 

Not everyone does need it, just like not everyone needs tables, or applets, or frames. What 
many people do need is an extensible tag set. They don't recognize this per se but they do 
recognize that HTML is too restrictive for their application. In due course, the "HTML 
community" will respond to this need by allowing arbitrary structure and semantic 
information. Some are not so far from this already and I suspect that the response will be 
sooner rather than later.

If an initial XML is in place early enough and isn't overly complex, it could be used by 
the HTML community rather than their reinventing the wheel. This is hardly guaranteed but 
we gain little by ignoring that community. Let's not repeat our mistake with HTTP.

Perhaps a small point but I believe that I said "allow the Web community to view XML as the 
natural evolution of HTML". I wouldn't mind if HTML became extinct through natural 
selection. However, it would be unfortunate if HTML can evolve fast enough to make XML 

Received on Wednesday, 2 October 1996 16:56:38 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Friday, 17 January 2020 20:25:03 UTC