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Subject: Re: "XHTML" as halfway house?
From: Andrew Paterson <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:[log in to unmask]
Date:Mon, 8 Jun 1998 19:07:09 GMT

text/plain (39 lines)

On Fri, 5 Jun 1998 08:22:28 -0400, John E. Simpson wrote:


>I understand what you're getting at in terms of wanting to use XML *now*,
>with a general-purpose Web browser. But this IMO would result in a horrible
>mishmash of meaning-and-presentation, and therefore at utter cross-purposes
>with XML's goals (and considerable strengths). Just 2 cents.

My 2 cents (or tuppence, as I am in the UK): As someone who came to
XML from HTML (via a brief foray into SGML), I also can appreciate
what Jorn Barger was saying but I have to agree with your view.

Previously on this list, Erin McKean started a thread by asking what
was the most important concept of XML to get across in a presentation
to people familiar with HTML but not SGML/XML. To me, it is the idea
that XML is about data structure and content whereas HTML is about
presentation. One way of looking at it is to say that XML is to HTML
as a database is to a desktop publisher. I don't know if that will
help or just confuse, but it helped me grasp the difference.

Therefore, by trying to marry two different concepts, mixing HTML and
XML would, I feel, potentially do more harm than good. In many ways,
the fact that XML "looks like" HTML (because if their common parent,
SGML) actually makes things more difficult - it would be much easier
to try and forget about HTML completely when trying to understand what
XML is about. Current applications of XML such as CDF, RDF, WIDL and
many others show that XML is a completely different animal to HTML.

To summarise (at last!), like Jorn, I would like to start doing
something simple but practical with XML that would ease me into it
gently (I'm afraid that a lot of the more advanced things still make
my head ache!) but to try and use XML as an extension to HTML is a
dangerous strategy.

Andrew Paterson
[log in to unmask]
Standard disclaimer applies

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