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Re: note from Prof Knuth

From: Frank Ellermann <nobody@xyzzy.claranet.de>
Date: Sat, 17 Sep 2005 15:14:57 +0200
To: www-validator@w3.org
Message-ID: <432C16D0.7CC9@xyzzy.claranet.de>

Maggie McLoughlin wrote:

> Every time I make a nontrivial change, I've been asking the
> validator to approve it. And every time, I've won the right
> to display the "HaL HTML Netscape checked" logo.

> Until today. Alluva sudden you guys have jerked the rug out
> from under my feet.

Trying to figure out what happened:


That page apparently says that a file Attic/html-mcom.dtd was
removed from the sgml-lib (2 years and 9 months ago).


That page apparently says that the html-mcom.dtd was never an
"official" DTD.

Of course I'm only guessing, but a "strict" variant of the 
missing DTD still exists in Google's cache of old W3C pages.

Maybe that is (a copy of) the relevant DTD:

Testing it with a local copy of Don's start page replacing its
Doctype by...

<!DOCTYPE HTML SYSTEM "http://www.mit.edu/afs/athena/org/v/validate/sgml-lib/old/older/html-mcom.dtd">

...I ran into some troubles, the validator uses then UTF-8 as
default, good enough for Don's us-ascii, but a dubious warning.

It also doesn't know entities like &aelig; resulting in errors.

The DTD includes "-//IETF//ENTITIES Added Latin 1 for HTML//EN"

Checking what the validator SGML-LIB should know.
http://validator.w3.org/sgml-lib/IETF/ISOlat1.ent says:

<!-- Character entity set. Typical invocation:
     <!ENTITY % ISOlat1 PUBLIC
       "ISO 8879-1986//ENTITIES Added Latin 1//EN//HTML">

The old/older/html-mcom.dtd however tries:

  "-//IETF//ENTITIES Added Latin 1 for HTML//EN">

I've no idea if that's related to the problem.  

Another straight forward attempt was to replace the obscure
Netscape DTD by HTML 3.2.  Unfortunately that won't work,
Don really has stuff like "absmiddle" on his start page.

WDG also doesn't know the missing DTD.  <sigh />  Bye, Frank
Received on Saturday, 17 September 2005 13:19:39 UTC

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