Various informal meetings were held throughout the week, and on Friday at
the SGML Open Technical Committee meetings, a group including
representation from a range of backgrounds met to discuss the feasibility
of defining a subset of the Document Style Semantics and Specification
Language (DSSSL). The goal is that this subset--dubbed DSSSL Lite--could
form a core for a style sheet specification that would be simple yet
powerful enough to provide a basis for style sheet interchange on the Web.
If we can suggest something in a very short timeframe, it is hoped that it
will be used in the upcoming release of SoftQuad's Panorama SGML browser
software that will be distributed via NCSA along with Mosaic.
To meet our goals, we realize that we cannot address all style sheet issues
immediately. However, working on the principle that any interchangeable
style information can only help browsers determine how to format
information, we believe that the interchange format for a useful subset of
style information can be developed quickly. Furthermore, by basing our
subset on the Draft International Standard (DIS) version of the DSSSL
standard--which is currently out for vote (due to close before the end of
this year) to become an International Standard (IS)--there is a
well-defined extension path.
Further information and discussion
The home page for DSSSL Lite information is at
In addition, there is a mailing list, sponsored by SGML Open but open to
all subscribers, for discussion of DSSSL Lite. (Thanks to Falch for
administering it.) To subscribe to the discussion list, send email to
<email@example.com> with the line "subscribe dsssl-lite
firstname.lastname@example.org" (without the quote marks) in the body of the
message. To post to the list, send email to <email@example.com>.
-- Tom Magliery ** NCSA ** 605 E Springfield ** Champaign IL 61820 ** USA