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HTML-WG  November 1995

HTML-WG November 1995

Subject:

Re: Why no new drafts? [was: HTML Editors (What's in store?) ]

From:

[log in to unmask] (Murray Altheim)

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Fri, 3 Nov 95 16:16:41 EST

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Gerald Oskoboiny <[log in to unmask]> writes:
>I'd really like to see an HTML 2.1 sometime in the near future which
>would include HTML 2.0 + tables + i18n + file-upload + other stable bits
>of the HTML 3.0 proposal. However, a draft for these "other stable bits"
>has yet to be written, correct?
>
>On the MarkUp.html page [1], there's an area called "Core Features"
>which seems to be what I'm thinking of: is anybody working on this?
>If I went through the HTML 3.0 proposal and picked out some of the more
>stable pieces (while paying attention to existing practice) and made it
>into a new draft, would I be stepping on anyone's toes? And, assuming I
>do a half-decent job, would this draft actually be useful in bringing
>about a speedy HTML 2.1, or would I be wasting my time?

Gerald,

I've volunteered to deliver some form of Modular DTD draft before the Dec.
WWW4 conference, which may begin to address some of these issues, or at
least provide a framework for interoperability with extensions while in an
experimental/ developmental state. Note that this does not address the
incremental versioning of standards-track documents, nor is this is an
attempt to provide a content negotiation solution.

I've just received Dave Raggett's response on his possible release of a 2.1
proposal. Could anyone providing information to Dave on proposed core HTML
features please copy me on those messages? I'm trying to outline the same
set of features as a "core" DTD module. As with Dave's request, these
should be features for which would easily achieve consensus.

>I don't think there was a consensus from last month's thread on how to
>proceed from HTML 2.0 (extension registries vs. feature negotiation vs.
>HTML 2.1 vs. HTML 3.1), but after some reflection I'm extremely convinced
>that HTML 2.1 or somesuch is the way to go, and that it should be done
>quickly.

I think the lack of consensus was due to the fact that much of the
discussion requires some sort of content negotiation scheme, which is
commonly considered beyond the scope of the HTML working group. I think it
was Larry Masinter who informally proposed to create an IETF working group
on content negotiation, but that has yet to reach fruition.

Lacking a content negotiation scheme, a modular DTD for HTML will work only
when HTML UAs start parsing doctype declarations, internal subsets, entity
declarations, etc. I believe we'll be seeing this functionality soon, with
the release of products like the Stonehand HTML viewer, SGML browsers,
etc., so rather than rely on non-existent and possibly problematic content
negotiation, I'm trying to take the SGML approach which has already been
roughly outlined in the specification.

(Sorry for the rough state of this message, I've been tied up in meetings
all day, and haven't had more than about ten minutes to catch up on email.)

Thanks,

Murray

__________________________________________________________________
      Murray M. Altheim, Information Systems Analyst
      National Technology Transfer Center, Wheeling, West Virginia
      email: [log in to unmask]
      www:   http://ogopogo.nttc.edu/people/maltheim/maltheim.html





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