W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-xsl-fo@w3.org > February 2001

Re: Renderers and XSL-FO, plus other thoughts...

From: Arved Sandstrom <asandstrom@accesscable.net>
Date: Sun, 4 Feb 2001 11:22:01 -0400
Message-ID: <005e01c08ebe$3c6d4b60$089e4718@accesscable.net>
To: <www-xsl-fo@w3.org>
Note: this was undoubtedly meant for the list, but got sent to me only
because of the Reply-To thing.

Hi, Dave

My meaning of "interchange format" is an implementation-centric meaning.
That is, I do not anticipate that users will ever look at an interchange
format. I think any file format becomes an interchange format if it exhibits
the quality of being an accepted medium of exchange. The situation is
analogous to a language translation problem: given 50 inputs (different
languages) and 50 outputs (other languages), the options are to prepare each
of the 2500 translation dictionaries, or prepare 100 dictionaries - 50 for
translation to English, and 50 for translation from English.

MS Word has become such a format, whether we like it or not.

I am not (repeat not) proselytizing on behalf of FO as an interchange
format, although I am not against it either in the context of formatting.The
reason I think it is a worthwhile subject for debate is because I see
formats suggested as things that should come out of a FO formatter+renderer
combination, that should actually either be inputs, or not be exposed to FO
formatting at all (HTML out of FO? What's the point?)
If FO is to be used at all, let us use it rationally.

I have prepared a diagram which exhibits my Weltanschauung of an ideal
system. It is attached.


----- Original Message -----
From: Dave Pawson <daveP@dpawson.freeserve.co.uk>
To: Arved Sandstrom <asandstrom@accesscable.net>
Sent: Wednesday, January 31, 2001 2:18 PM
Subject: Re: Renderers and XSL-FO, plus other thoughts...

> At 10:39 AM 1/31/01, Arved Sandstrom wrote:
> >I wasn't aware of this particular WAI-driven clause. I'll have to check
> >out.
> >
> >Why was WAI so against FO as "interchange"? Because in scenarios that I
> >envisage, I still wouldn't expect to be visually inspecting FO. And how
> >the current situation better, where a visually-impaired person has to
> >deal with putting FO inside XSLT templates?
> If you look at that as a case of 'using' a stylesheet (fo or other)
> to 'read' an XML document, does that make sense?
> Sighted readers might prefer fo ->pdf
> Low vision might want same, but with 30 point print.
> A blind user would want (maybe) braille/audio output.
> Simply a case of give a reader the choice?
> AS.
> >I'm not sure that _this_ issue is a "user" issue. This has more to do
> >implementations. From the viewpoint of elegance I just object to taking
> >(which in theory I could convert to RTF better at that point), running a
> >processor on it, then running a renderer on the output to produce RTF,
> >will probably have considerably more translation work to do at that point
> >because the levels of abstraction are different.
> I think its a user perspective. MY guess, your view, as implementor,
> is quite markedly different from a user view?
> >The user would see a "print-quality output preparation system" based on
> >You're right, they wouldn't care, nor should they. Adding to the first
> >point, in this view FO as an interchange format would also be internal to
> >the "printing system".
> Perhaps we differ in terms of understanding? Would you define interchage
> format please? Between who and whom?
> >Right, I think we would have to be talking about CSS3 to make this
> >realistic. We're still talking (IMHO) about printing here, mainly
> >(high-quality output); let Web browsers deal with HTML...
> don't forget that CSS3 has a good auditory capability?
> Regards DaveP

(image/gif attachment: InterchangeFO.gif)

Received on Sunday, 4 February 2001 10:27:17 UTC

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