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RE: Math Working Group Charter

From: Paul Topping <pault@dessci.com>
Date: Wed, 19 Feb 2014 17:06:18 +0000
To: Frederic Wang <fred.wang@free.fr>, "www-math@w3.org" <www-math@w3.org>
Message-ID: <B6C5B1ABA88AF446821B281774E6DB7199D763@FERMAT.corp.dessci>
Daniel Marques actually did a better job of explaining my position than I did. I will defer to that.

Paul

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Frédéric WANG [mailto:fred.wang@free.fr]
> Sent: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 9:03 AM
> To: www-math@w3.org
> Subject: Re: Math Working Group Charter
> 
> @Paul: Well, I think I just didn't understand what you say :-) You
> started by mentioning improvements to Web fonts for math (but this just
> a format to allow fonts to be downloaded and used as system font, so I
> don't see why it should be different for math) ; then I understood you
> wanted to expose font features like math kerning to perform low-level
> math layout in Javascript (but apparently you now say you didn't mean to
> do low-level layout) ; and finally you now state a general and abstract
> statement from which I can hardly say anything. So I believe I agree
> with you about the Web Platform replacing the traditional OS (that's
> what for example FirefoxOS and others are doing) but if you meant
> reimplementing low-level browser layout (HTML, MathML or anything else)
> in Javascript then I disagree on that point.
> 
> Le 19/02/2014 17:37, Paul Topping a écrit :
> > @Fred: I think you are taking what I said to the extreme and then
> countering it. All I am suggesting is that it is possible to view this activity from
> a different perspective. The more people see the Web Platform as a
> platform for delivering apps of all kinds, the more the Web Platform will
> become like a traditional OS. Of course, the details will be different as the
> technologies have changed. I am definitely not arguing for implementing
> low-level text layout in JS. However, it is usually a bad idea for any one group
> to define what facilities the OS needs. It has to fulfill the needs of a variety of
> imaginative parties and not narrow things down to some small set of
> preconceived app types.
> >
> > Paul
> >
> >> -----Original Message-----
> >> From: Frédéric WANG [mailto:fred.wang@free.fr]
> >> Sent: Tuesday, February 18, 2014 10:22 PM
> >> To: www-math@w3.org
> >> Subject: Re: Math Working Group Charter
> >>
> >> @Paul: I think the idea behind the Web platform is to extend the Web
> >> with higher-level functionalities using Javascript and other HTML5
> >> technologies (including MathML) not to reinvent the wheel by
> >> implementing all the low-level browser features (although I won't be
> >> surprised that some JS extremists want that). So since you moved the
> >> discussion to text rendering, note that it is one of the most complex
> >> part of browser layout and I don't believe anyone is crazy enough to try
> >> to reimplement it in Javascript by positioning individual glyphs with
> >> <span>'s etc. By extension, this is true for math rendering which can be
> >> seen as some complex text layout. Even if the lack of interest of some
> >> browser vendors has lead people to rely on polyfills to fill the gap
> >> here, this is not justified from a purely technical point of view.
> >>
> >> So concretely to come back to the case of science, I believe the idea
> >> behind the Web platform is to rely on native HTML5 features like
> MathML,
> >> SVG or WebGL in order to create higher level features to easily do
> >> TeX-to-MathML conversion, graph drawings, 3D schemas etc and not to
> do
> >> low level math layout, which is one thing MathML was designed for. IIUC,
> >> that's the aspect the MathJax project would like to progressively focus
> >> on once the native MathML issue is fixed. This is also the kind of
> >> higher level API that I'm sometimes missing for my EPUB samples.
> >>
> >> --
> >> Frédéric Wang
> >> MathML Crowdfunding: ulule.com/mathematics-ebooks
> >>
> 
> 
> --
> Frédéric Wang
> MathML Crowdfunding: ulule.com/mathematics-ebooks
> 

Received on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 17:06:46 UTC

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