XML, XHTML, Text Structuring, and CSS

Discussion in 'HTML' started by Blue, Jan 1, 2004.

  1. Blue

    Blue Guest

    Could someone draw me a picture?

    I have been writting a web site in XHTML 1.1 and CSS and since I have
    already locked myself into standard supporting browsers(Gecko and
    Opera mainly) I am wondering what's the point of XHTML and CSS? It
    seems to me I could just write XML+CSS. I have to write the CSS file
    anyway so what's the purpose of the XHTML format?

    Looking at all the span's and div's I create I keep thinking I'd be
    better off just creating my own tags. It would certainly look better.
    And then I think, why am I using HTML tags anyway when if I just
    create all the tags myself the documents would be simplier.

    In reading up on XHTML everyone is stressing that HTML is suppose to
    be about data structuring and not display. Fine, can someone give me
    an example of how wonderful HTML is at data structuring?

    Of course I understand XML and CSS have limitations but eventually
    that won't be. What's HTML's purpose? Why should it be used to
    create web pages? What's so great about using <p>, <h1>, and <ul>?
    Using an origional XML format and a CSS file, browsers could do the
    same thing.

    I'm must be missing the point somewhere.
    Blue, Jan 1, 2004
    #1
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  2. Blue

    brucie Guest

    in post <news:>
    Blue said:

    > Could someone draw me a picture?


    ///\\
    // \\
    | - - |
    C ) D
    |\___/|
    \___/
    ___| |___
    / \
    / '.` '.' \
    / | ` | \
    / /| . |\ \
    / / | ___ | \ \
    / / |//|||\\| \ \
    ((( ||||||||| ))=
    |||||||||
    |||||||||
    ///|||\\\
    =(( |_| |_| )))
    \ \ / \ / /
    \ \/ \/ /
    ___\/_/\__:__/\_\/______


    --
    brucie
    01/January/2004 05:45:59 pm kilo
    brucie, Jan 1, 2004
    #2
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  3. Blue wrote:
    > I have been writting a web site in XHTML 1.1 and CSS and since I have
    > already locked myself into standard supporting browsers(Gecko and
    > Opera mainly) I am wondering what's the point of XHTML and CSS? It
    > seems to me I could just write XML+CSS. I have to write the CSS file
    > anyway so what's the purpose of the XHTML format?


    There are at least two reasons to use XHTML instead of your own XML format:

    1. If you want anything but text (images and forms, for instance),
    you'll have a pretty hard time with a custom format. You'll either have
    to write your own browser or use very new standards which aren't
    supported anywhere.

    2. With a few hacks, modern XHTML+CSS can display nearly everywhere --
    even Mosaic! Can your custom XML format do that?
    Leif K-Brooks, Jan 1, 2004
    #3
  4. Blue

    kayodeok Guest

    Blue <> wrote in
    news::

    > In reading up on XHTML everyone is stressing that HTML is
    > suppose to be about data structuring and not display. Fine, can
    > someone give me an example of how wonderful HTML is at data
    > structuring?


    This should start you on your way:
    http://groups.google.com/groups?&as_umsgid=
    http://www.google.com/search?q=semantic shirky

    > Of course I understand XML and CSS have limitations but
    > eventually that won't be. What's HTML's purpose? Why should it
    > be used to create web pages? What's so great about using <p>,
    > <h1>, and <ul>? Using an origional XML format and a CSS file,
    > browsers could do the same thing.


    Internet Explorer won't display your webpage (but I think the Gecko Browsers will).

    --
    Kayode Okeyode
    http://www.kayodeok.co.uk/weblog/
    http://www.kayodeok.btinternet.co.uk/favorites/webdesign.htm
    kayodeok, Jan 1, 2004
    #4
  5. Blue wrote:

    > In reading up on XHTML everyone is stressing that HTML is suppose to
    > be about data structuring and not display. Fine, can someone give me
    > an example of how wonderful HTML is at data structuring?


    HTML has *semantics* -- it attaches meaning to a document.

    Blue's Random XML Document Format [TM] (BRXDF) does not have semantics.
    OK, well it may do, but it's unlikely any browser understands them.

    With an HTML document, a browser can use the semantics attached to the
    document to do stuff. For example, create a document outline from the
    headings:

    http://www.goddamn.co.uk/tobyink/scratch/headings-in-dillo

    Or automatically add section numbering:

    http://www.goddamn.co.uk/tobyink/scratch/section-numbering-in-amaya

    With a BRXDF document, a browser couldn't do that.

    --
    Toby A Inkster BSc (Hons) ARCS
    Contact Me - http://www.goddamn.co.uk/tobyink/?page=132
    Toby A Inkster, Jan 1, 2004
    #5
  6. Blue

    Andy Dingley Guest

    On Thu, 01 Jan 2004 07:43:17 GMT, Blue <> wrote:

    >It seems to me I could just write XML+CSS. I have to write the CSS file
    >anyway so what's the purpose of the XHTML format?


    Congratulations - you already are. XHTML is as much "XML" as anything
    else.

    It's impossible to write "pure XML". As soon as you write your first
    element, you've chosen a DTD, even if this is informal and only
    expressed by the document itself. If you use CSS, then you're relying
    on this DTD being shared between the XML document and the CSS
    stylesheet.

    So your question really reduces to "When I write XML, should I use the
    XHTML DTD or some other DTD of my own invention ?" Stated like this,
    it's obvious that the "roll your own" approach is no _simpler_ than
    using XHTML, because it's just not possible to reject DTDs altogether.

    As to whether it's better, then I don't think so. XHTML has the
    following advantages:

    - It's supported by non-CSS browsers (and various other legacy
    scenarios, including non-XML tag-soup browsers). The "Best viewed with
    browser Foobar" approach is bad (posts passim.) Remember too that one
    of the most important browsers around is a search engine's spider.

    - CSS can't emulate links

    - CSS can't emulate <img>, unless you go overboard with the id
    attributes and also embed a lot of image URLs into the CSS, which
    starts to encroach on being content rather than presentation.

    - CSS only gets applied inside the <body> element. It helps you
    naught for the stuff in <head>


    Yes, you _can_ write your entire document with <p class="foo" >
    <xhtml:span class="bar"> elements and use CSS to do the rest. But you
    don't _gain_ anything by doing this over a more traditional HTML-like
    approach with <p> and <h*>. You lose a lot of backward compatibility
    too.


    A few years back, I had a content assembly problem where I was
    assembling lots of text stored as XML, then eventually outputting it
    as HTML (and PDFs, SMIL and other things too). I published on this at
    ICALT 2001 in Wisconsin. I started off with DocBook as my DTD, but in
    the end I switched to XHTML. I was using very little other than <p
    class="..." > and DocBook was offering me little useful in addition. I
    could have invented my own DTD, but this was a lot more work, again
    for little benefit (over using classes). Using XHTML from content to
    published output was technically little simpler, but it did make the
    code easier to read and be human-understandable.


    BTW - If you do publish as XML, then don't stop at CSS. You really
    don't start to gain real advantages until you're using XSLT.

    --
    Klein bottle for rent. Apply within.
    Andy Dingley, Jan 1, 2004
    #6
  7. I think you underestimate the power of CSS.

    Andy Dingley wrote:

    > - CSS can't emulate <img>, unless you go overboard with the id
    > attributes and also embed a lot of image URLs into the CSS, which
    > starts to encroach on being content rather than presentation.


    You might be able to do:

    <myImg mysrc="blah.png" />
    myImg:before { content: url(attr(mySrc)); }

    Although I'm not sure.

    > - CSS only gets applied inside the <body> element. It helps you
    > naught for the stuff in <head>


    Not true.

    head { display: block; }
    head * { display: none; }
    head title { display: block;
    color: red; background: blue;
    text-align: center; font-size: 1.8em; }

    --
    Toby A Inkster BSc (Hons) ARCS
    Contact Me - http://www.goddamn.co.uk/tobyink/?page=132
    Toby A Inkster, Jan 1, 2004
    #7
  8. Jukka K. Korpela, Jan 1, 2004
    #8
  9. Andy Dingley <> wrote:

    > It's impossible to write "pure XML".


    It isn't. Here's a proof:

    <foo>Hello world</foo>

    That's pure XML. I just wrote it.

    > As soon as you write your
    > first element, you've chosen a DTD,


    No, I haven't. See, no DTD:

    <foo>Hello world</foo>

    > even if this is informal


    There's no such thing as an informal DTD - that's a real oxymoron, like
    a rectangular circle.

    > and only expressed by the document itself.


    I don't see what you mean by that. A DTD can be included into a
    document or referred to by the document. The difference between these
    two only matters (apart from practical efficiency considerations)
    only misguided doctype sniffers.

    > If you use CSS, then you're
    > relying on this DTD being shared between the XML document and the
    > CSS stylesheet.


    No, I'm not.

    <?xml-stylesheet type="text/css" href="test.css"?>
    <foo>Hello world</foo>

    > So your question really reduces to "When I write XML, should I use
    > the XHTML DTD or some other DTD of my own invention ?"


    Does it? If that's the question, then the answer simply depends on
    whether you are using XHTML or not.

    > Stated like
    > this, it's obvious that the "roll your own" approach is no
    > _simpler_ than using XHTML, because it's just not possible to
    > reject DTDs altogether.


    It is. And if you use a DTD, then XHTML DTDs are not the only existing
    DTDs to choose from.

    > As to whether it's better, then I don't think so. XHTML has the
    > following advantages:


    I think you are making some (good) points on the benefits of HTML over
    markup (SGML or HMTL) without publicly specified semantics and
    widespread browser support. The "X" prefix just causes confusion here.

    --
    Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
    Pages about Web authoring: http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/www.html
    Jukka K. Korpela, Jan 1, 2004
    #9
  10. Blue <> wrote:

    > I have been writting a web site in XHTML 1.1 and CSS


    Why XHTML 1.1? The whole specification is an exercise in futility and
    deprives you of things that are useful on the Web of today and the near
    future. And the browser that is by far the most common on the Web
    chokes on XHTML 1.1 when served in the recommended way.

    > and since I
    > have already locked myself into standard supporting browsers(Gecko
    > and Opera mainly) I am wondering what's the point of XHTML and CSS?


    Pardon? You have dug yourself into a hole where only a small avantgarde
    minority can access your pages, and now you are asking why you did
    that?

    > It seems to me I could just write XML+CSS. I have to write the CSS
    > file anyway so what's the purpose of the XHTML format?


    Oh. So you are now asking how to dig deeper. The avantgarde of the
    avantgarde is already using user style sheets that may override
    anything you say in your style sheet. So even they will find your pages
    inaccesible.

    > I'm must be missing the point somewhere.


    Now that's something to agree on. There's some scent of trolling in the
    air, but I think you are serious - and seriously misguided. It's so sad
    to see how right I was in my article "Lurching Toward Babel: HTML, CSS,
    and XML", Computer, July 1998 (!),
    http://www.computer.org/computer/co1998/pdf/r7103.pdf
    where I warned:
    "The XML metalanguage can define the
    formal syntax of a language, such as nesting
    rules for elements. The semantics could
    of course be described in plain English. But
    this doesn’t seem to be of interest to XML
    evangelists. They are more interested in
    just specifying presentation with CSS.
    Naturally, this means that they do not use
    CSS as a presentation suggestion only,
    since (with the XML/CSS model) there is
    no default or user-defined presentation."
    and
    "As a publishing method, XML/CSS is
    comparable to using text processing
    software with styles or macros:"
    That is, it means a huge leap - into the bad old times
    before the ideas of platform, device and program independence.

    --
    Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
    Pages about Web authoring: http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/www.html
    Jukka K. Korpela, Jan 1, 2004
    #10
  11. Blue

    Andy Dingley Guest

    On Thu, 1 Jan 2004 13:47:41 +0000 (UTC), "Jukka K. Korpela"
    <> wrote:

    >Andy Dingley <> wrote:
    >
    >> It's impossible to write "pure XML".

    >
    >It isn't. Here's a proof:
    >
    ><foo>Hello world</foo>
    >
    >That's pure XML. I just wrote it.


    No, that has an "implicit DTD" which includes the use of the element
    "foo".

    Now any term such as "implicit DTD" is obviously wrong, but I'm too
    tired and lazy to think of a better one. I'm not implying anything
    DTD-like here, just the informal and undocumented implicit usage that
    you get as soon as you use the first element with a name (and as
    well-formed XML always needs a root, then you always have to do this).

    You're smart enough to understand what I mean. _You_ think of a better
    expression for it, if you think an alt group is worth it.
    Andy Dingley, Jan 1, 2004
    #11
  12. Blue

    Andy Dingley Guest

    On Thu, 1 Jan 2004 14:07:22 +0000 (UTC), "Jukka K. Korpela"
    <> wrote:

    >They are more interested in
    >just specifying presentation with CSS.


    Who is "they" ? Who is this mythical cabal who are pushing XML for
    presentational tasks like this, and how many of them are foolish
    enough to think that pure XML+CSS can offer anything ?

    Where was this published ? The Daily Mail ? It reads like their style
    - FUD about an invented threat from strange foreign chaps (who
    probably have beards and wear funny clothes).


    --
    Congrats to STBL on his elevation from TLA to ETLA
    Andy Dingley, Jan 1, 2004
    #12
  13. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 1 Jan 2004 17:54:32 +1000, brucie
    <> wrote:

    >in post <news:>
    >Blue said:
    >
    >> Could someone draw me a picture?

    >
    > ///\\
    > // \\
    > | - - |
    > C ) D
    > |\___/|
    > \___/
    > ___| |___
    > / \
    > / '.` '.' \
    > / | ` | \
    > / /| . |\ \
    > / / | ___ | \ \
    > / / |//|||\\| \ \
    > ((( ||||||||| ))=
    > |||||||||
    > |||||||||
    > ///|||\\\
    > =(( |_| |_| )))
    > \ \ / \ / /
    > \ \/ \/ /
    > ___\/_/\__:__/\_\/______
    >


    What on gods earth are happening with his feet?
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #13
  14. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 01 Jan 2004 08:13:08 GMT, Leif K-Brooks
    <> wrote:

    >1. If you want anything but text (images and forms, for instance),
    >you'll have a pretty hard time with a custom format. You'll either have
    >to write your own browser or use very new standards which aren't
    >supported anywhere.


    Yes CSS3 isn't a standard yet but it's getting there and mozilla
    already has some functionality. It's not there yet but the main point
    of the point is to assume it was, what's HTML's selling point? Maybe
    if HTML looked something like docbook with it's structuring I would
    see a reason to use it. I don't understand why W3 bothers with HTML
    beyond XHTML 1.0 aka HTML 4.01. It seems to be they should have
    started something else, what they claim HTML should have been. The
    XTHML documents talk about HTML ment to be a structuring format, how
    many people buy that?

    >2. With a few hacks, modern XHTML+CSS can display nearly everywhere --
    >even Mosaic! Can your custom XML format do that?


    Why should *I* want that for my rinky dink little page? Only
    marketing companies care about that sort of thing. No offence but do
    you really think I care about the 0.000001% of people using Mosaic?
    Or even netscape 4? I might care about IE6 but after a long while
    thinking it over I decided I really don't..

    The main point is assume there was only one browser and everything
    worked. What's so great about XHTML as it currently is or where it's
    going to continue useing it?

    HTML to me has ALWAYS been about presentation and evidently to you too
    as you care how your pages "look" on each and every user agent. But
    the people in charge of it have different ideas. They talk about it
    as if it were something that looked like docbook.

    P.S. I'd love to see a search engine be able to seperate pages based
    on browser compatability. It's another way to seperate the chaf fromt
    the wheat.
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #14
  15. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 01 Jan 2004 10:35:50 +0000, Toby A Inkster
    <> wrote:

    >Blue wrote:
    >
    >> In reading up on XHTML everyone is stressing that HTML is suppose to
    >> be about data structuring and not display. Fine, can someone give me
    >> an example of how wonderful HTML is at data structuring?

    >
    >HTML has *semantics* -- it attaches meaning to a document.
    >
    >Blue's Random XML Document Format [TM] (BRXDF) does not have semantics.
    >OK, well it may do, but it's unlikely any browser understands them.
    >
    >With an HTML document, a browser can use the semantics attached to the
    >document to do stuff. For example, create a document outline from the
    >headings:
    >
    > http://www.goddamn.co.uk/tobyink/scratch/headings-in-dillo
    >
    >Or automatically add section numbering:
    >
    > http://www.goddamn.co.uk/tobyink/scratch/section-numbering-in-amaya
    >
    >With a BRXDF document, a browser couldn't do that.


    Again I mean no offence but you really think I need to do that? How
    often do views do that? The only one I see doing something like that
    is the author. And I can perfectly well do that using a language with
    an XML module looking for analogous heading tags. If you strip out
    all the presentational stuff your left with what was displayable in
    Mosiac. How many sets of tags is that? Have you looked at them? How
    much contextual information can you infer from they and what
    percentage of web sites over the years have used them that way?

    My whole point I think is, like it or not HTML is presentatial and the
    W3 has been smoking something sometihng doped with some bad stuff if
    they they HTML is structural.

    HTML 1.0 is good. It's gives a way to transform pages into HTML if
    that's what you want. They should have given XHTML over to
    presentational people to evolve and the structural people should have
    formed a new group rather than hijacking HTML.

    But that's how I see it, no one agree, where have I missed something?
    I feel like I'm missing something.

    P.S. I really do thank you all for replying. I know I sound irate
    but that's how I feel right now about this subject, not about any of
    you.
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #15
  16. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 01 Jan 2004 11:09:53 +0000, Andy Dingley
    <> wrote:

    >Congratulations - you already are. XHTML is as much "XML" as anything
    >else.


    Duh. Sematics, how clever. (Sorry, I couldn't help myself)

    >It's impossible to write "pure XML". As soon as you write your first
    >element, you've chosen a DTD, even if this is informal and only
    >expressed by the document itself. If you use CSS, then you're relying
    >on this DTD being shared between the XML document and the CSS
    >stylesheet.
    >
    >So your question really reduces to "When I write XML, should I use the
    >XHTML DTD or some other DTD of my own invention ?" Stated like this,


    So it is.

    >it's obvious that the "roll your own" approach is no _simpler_ than
    >using XHTML, because it's just not possible to reject DTDs altogether.


    You off on a tangent as I'm not trying to reject DTDs. We're talking
    about HTML aka XHTML and where it's going, namely XHTML 2.0 and
    beyond. I have no problem with XHTML 1.0 so documents can be
    transformed into HTML 4.01.

    >As to whether it's better, then I don't think so. XHTML has the
    >following advantages:
    >
    > - It's supported by non-CSS browsers (and various other legacy
    >scenarios, including non-XML tag-soup browsers). The "Best viewed with
    >browser Foobar" approach is bad (posts passim.) Remember too that one
    >of the most important browsers around is a search engine's spider.
    >
    >- CSS can't emulate links
    >
    >- CSS can't emulate <img>, unless you go overboard with the id
    >attributes and also embed a lot of image URLs into the CSS, which
    >starts to encroach on being content rather than presentation.


    This in neither here no there but I have read somewhere that in XHTML
    2.0 the <img> might be removed and relagated to the object tag. How's
    that for compatability? Furthermore HTML 2.0 isn't compatabile at all
    with legacy user agents because the http mime has to be
    application/xhtml+xml and from what I have read all legacy browsers
    choke on it.

    > - CSS only gets applied inside the <body> element. It helps you
    >naught for the stuff in <head>
    >
    >
    >Yes, you _can_ write your entire document with <p class="foo" >
    ><xhtml:span class="bar"> elements and use CSS to do the rest. But you
    >don't _gain_ anything by doing this over a more traditional HTML-like
    >approach with <p> and <h*>. You lose a lot of backward compatibility
    >too.
    >
    >
    >A few years back, I had a content assembly problem where I was
    >assembling lots of text stored as XML, then eventually outputting it
    >as HTML (and PDFs, SMIL and other things too). I published on this at
    >ICALT 2001 in Wisconsin. I started off with DocBook as my DTD, but in
    >the end I switched to XHTML. I was using very little other than <p
    >class="..." > and DocBook was offering me little useful in addition. I
    >could have invented my own DTD, but this was a lot more work, again
    >for little benefit (over using classes). Using XHTML from content to
    >published output was technically little simpler, but it did make the
    >code easier to read and be human-understandable.


    Finally something of substance but you skipped some details. While I
    could ask about the detail you left out I'll instead ask for a URL
    (until I actually use a URN I will not use the term URI).

    I have to make assumptions for now and probabbly get it wrong. You
    used XHTML for source and transformed documents. You were mostly
    using p-class in it sounds like in both source and destination. Hence
    you really weren't using structural HTML but rather you own embeded
    markup via class declarations. You own your own implied DTD. What
    did it get you? You can read it in both Mosiac and Netscape 4 if you
    have to. Did you realy need that ability?

    >BTW - If you do publish as XML, then don't stop at CSS. You really
    >don't start to gain real advantages until you're using XSLT.


    Of course. I already use XSLT. But if one creates simple web pages
    full of text, like most web pages, you don't really need it.


    Thanks for your reply.
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #16
  17. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 01 Jan 2004 13:26:26 +0000, Toby A Inkster
    <> wrote:

    >I think you underestimate the power of CSS.
    >
    >Andy Dingley wrote:
    >
    >> - CSS can't emulate <img>, unless you go overboard with the id
    >> attributes and also embed a lot of image URLs into the CSS, which
    >> starts to encroach on being content rather than presentation.

    >
    >You might be able to do:
    >
    > <myImg mysrc="blah.png" />
    > myImg:before { content: url(attr(mySrc)); }
    >
    >Although I'm not sure.
    >
    >> - CSS only gets applied inside the <body> element. It helps you
    >> naught for the stuff in <head>

    >
    >Not true.
    >
    > head { display: block; }
    > head * { display: none; }
    > head title { display: block;
    > color: red; background: blue;
    > text-align: center; font-size: 1.8em; }


    I'm not sure how Gecko and other browsers currently implement HTML but
    part of my implied point is eventually it will mostly be a default
    overrideable CSS docuement. Probably with a few hacks for things not
    in the CSS standards yet.
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #17
  18. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 1 Jan 2004 13:47:41 +0000 (UTC), "Jukka K. Korpela"
    <> wrote:

    >> As soon as you write your
    >> first element, you've chosen a DTD,

    >
    >No, I haven't. See, no DTD:


    LOL

    >I don't see what you mean by that. A DTD can be included into a
    >document or referred to by the document. The difference between these
    >two only matters (apart from practical efficiency considerations)
    >only misguided doctype sniffers.
    >
    >> If you use CSS, then you're
    >> relying on this DTD being shared between the XML document and the
    >> CSS stylesheet.

    >
    >No, I'm not.
    >
    ><?xml-stylesheet type="text/css" href="test.css"?>
    ><foo>Hello world</foo>


    Don't be too rough with him. We all know what he ment.

    >> So your question really reduces to "When I write XML, should I use
    >> the XHTML DTD or some other DTD of my own invention ?"

    >
    >Does it? If that's the question, then the answer simply depends on
    >whether you are using XHTML or not.
    >
    >> Stated like
    >> this, it's obvious that the "roll your own" approach is no
    >> _simpler_ than using XHTML, because it's just not possible to
    >> reject DTDs altogether.

    >
    >It is. And if you use a DTD, then XHTML DTDs are not the only existing
    >DTDs to choose from.
    >
    >> As to whether it's better, then I don't think so. XHTML has the
    >> following advantages:

    >
    >I think you are making some (good) points on the benefits of HTML over
    >markup (SGML or HMTL) without publicly specified semantics and
    >widespread browser support. The "X" prefix just causes confusion here.


    I agree. But the question is, what's so great about HTML in and of
    itself, if browser support is irelevent. I only care that there is at
    least one browser that can display what I create. If it takes two
    different views to look at a HTML site I create and a XML site I
    create then so be it. The question is what is so intrinsicly better
    about HTML+CSS over XML+CSS? I already acknowledged that CSS indeed
    does have a little bit further to go for full functionality but
    everything else being equal what's so much better about HTML?
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #18
  19. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 1 Jan 2004 14:07:22 +0000 (UTC), "Jukka K. Korpela"
    <> wrote:

    >Blue <> wrote:
    >
    >> I have been writting a web site in XHTML 1.1 and CSS

    >
    >Why XHTML 1.1? The whole specification is an exercise in futility and
    >deprives you of things that are useful on the Web of today and the near
    >future. And the browser that is by far the most common on the Web
    >chokes on XHTML 1.1 when served in the recommended way.


    IE doesn't care about me so I don't care about IE. I'm not selling
    anything or pushing a religion. I really don't care how many people
    using older browsers can read what I have written so long as new user
    agents can or at least can be adapted to easily.

    Frankly. XHTML 1.0 should be served as application/xhtml+xml. That
    MS hasn't pached IE for this or that it just doesn't ignore the http
    mime type is beyond me even if their XHTML and XML are wrong.
    Personally I think it's just a strategy to build up Gecko and Opera's
    market share a bit to help refute monopoly claims. But that's neither
    here nor there.

    XHTML 1.0 and 1.1 for that matter are both good things. (And as a
    side note you can still have frames in 1.1 if you write a DTD driver
    for it like I did or just ignore the DTD and just use those tags
    anyway.) They are important so that proprietary server side HTML (as
    XML) can be efficiently be transformed into more or less traditional
    HTML without too much CPU strain.

    But the XHTML 2.0 spec and the direction they are going is part of my
    posting. Why didn't they just start over with a new name and format
    from scratch? HTML failed as a structural language early in it's
    life. It IS a presentational language.

    >Pardon? You have dug yourself into a hole where only a small avantgarde
    >minority can access your pages, and now you are asking why you did
    >that?


    No I'm asking why am I bothering with this XHTML hole when the XML
    hole looks so much more cozy.

    >> It seems to me I could just write XML+CSS. I have to write the CSS
    >> file anyway so what's the purpose of the XHTML format?

    >
    >Oh. So you are now asking how to dig deeper. The avantgarde of the
    >avantgarde is already using user style sheets that may override
    >anything you say in your style sheet. So even they will find your pages
    >inaccesible.


    No more like they would just choose to read the text source which if I
    do my job correctly would be more plesent than reading HTML.

    > I'm must be missing the point somewhere.
    >
    >Now that's something to agree on. There's some scent of trolling in the
    >air, but I think you are serious - and seriously misguided. It's so sad
    >to see how right I was in my article "Lurching Toward Babel: HTML, CSS,
    >and XML", Computer, July 1998 (!),
    >http://www.computer.org/computer/co1998/pdf/r7103.pdf


    Actually you the type of person I was looking for a responce from as
    your one of the supposed structural HTML people.

    An interesting read and quite relevent but I don't come to your
    conclusion. You missed the point of XML. XML is an ackknowledgement
    of all the proprietary extentions that were going to and did happen to
    HTML like it or not. And it's a beautiful thing as it's allows
    standards and proprietary implimentations to co exist. It alows the
    w3 to enforce it's semantics so that individual user agents like
    Internet Explorer can't claim they are following the standard or show
    a good reason why they have to not follow it. And guess what,
    developement of IE and has gone down the drain since.

    >where I warned:
    >"The XML metalanguage can define the
    >formal syntax of a language, such as nesting
    >rules for elements. The semantics could
    >of course be described in plain English. But
    >this doesn’t seem to be of interest to XML
    >evangelists. They are more interested in
    >just specifying presentation with CSS.
    >Naturally, this means that they do not use
    >CSS as a presentation suggestion only,
    >since (with the XML/CSS model) there is
    >no default or user-defined presentation."
    >and
    >"As a publishing method, XML/CSS is
    >comparable to using text processing
    >software with styles or macros:"
    >That is, it means a huge leap - into the bad old times
    >before the ideas of platform, device and program independence.


    To be quite frank you have it backward. I'm actually more interested
    in structure and I'm saying that HTML 4.01 isn't structural enough.
    I'm saying that I use p-class statements much as if I was designing my
    own html tags. I use it as psuedo XML. So why not go there? The big
    question: What is so darn great about HTML? To me the only reason to
    use it is for presentation but I can use CSS for the most part for
    that. And if I want even more structure I can use XML+XMLT+CSS if I'm
    willing to embrace curreently bleeding edge browsers.

    Custom Structural XML -> XSLT -> Presentational XML+CSS

    What's so really bad that? When an adequate advanced structural format
    comes along I can later embrace that.

    Or for really basic pages to introduce my dog Togo why not just a
    basic simple structural and presentational XML + CSS. We're talking
    about a page less than 1K in size here.

    P.S. Just to make it clear I don't really have a dog Togo.
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #19
  20. Blue

    Blue Guest

    On Thu, 01 Jan 2004 15:48:00 +0000, Andy Dingley
    <> wrote:

    >On Thu, 1 Jan 2004 14:07:22 +0000 (UTC), "Jukka K. Korpela"
    ><> wrote:
    >
    >>They are more interested in
    >>just specifying presentation with CSS.

    >
    >Who is "they" ? Who is this mythical cabal who are pushing XML for
    >presentational tasks like this, and how many of them are foolish
    >enough to think that pure XML+CSS can offer anything ?
    >
    >Where was this published ? The Daily Mail ? It reads like their style
    >- FUD about an invented threat from strange foreign chaps (who
    >probably have beards and wear funny clothes).


    I have to agree here. I'm probably among the few dozen, if that many,
    to actually REALLY contemple doing it, though I think I can remember a
    few articles saying it was possible, I can't say they were advocating
    it.
    Blue, Jan 2, 2004
    #20
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