An HTML 3.0 page to cut your browser's teeth on (2)

lilley (
Thu, 16 Mar 1995 19:24:36 +0500

(sorry about the last blank one - finger trouble).

I started out making some trivial HTML 3.0 test pages, then got tired
of the content-free stuff and decided to tackle a decent page; something
you could not do in HTML 2.0, that would show off HTML 3.0 a bit.

The page uses FIG (all the attributes except overlay), tables with
embedded NOTE ROLE=Footnote, a character from HTMLlat-1 (the degree sign)
and superscripts in non-math mode. I picked the subject partly because the
obvious text-only replacement for the graphic requires multiple lines of
text, not suitable for ALT. I feel this is also a good example because there
is an obvious thing that HTML 3.0 has not been able to do - use the glyphs
for the signs of the zodiac. In other words, if you need to include specialist
symbols - APL, music, astrology, hieroglyphics - there is still no better
solution than inline images masquerading as textual entities (which I
did not stoop to on this page).

The result, validated with the Mon 13-Mar-95 09:51:25 DTD, is at

It is being served as text/html at the moment, because I wanted to see how
existing browsers coped with it:

Arena 0.96p, I am sorry to say, hangs then dumps core with this page. I think
it is the footnotes inside the table.

Mosaic for X 2.5b4 shows both the FIG graphic *and* the textual alternative.
It correctly hides the footnotes, but cannot display ° or   and
puts in a bizarre "broken image" NCSA logo where there is no image. Curious.
It displays the table OK, but without the superscripted text. So it is sometimes
displaying the content without the tags, and sometimes hiding the content.

Netscape for X 1.1b1 does not display the graphic but does display the textual
alternative. It displays the footnotes inline, which results in huge table
headings that look rather odd. It handles   but not °. Superscript
text is not superscripted, but the content is shown.

I do not have access to emacs-w3 - I tried to install it once, but the
meta-x-alt-f3 stuff was a bit beyond an emacs-virgin like myself (I can load
and save and move the cursor, that's about it). I would be pleased to get
reports from users of other HTML3.0 (or getting that way) browsers; please
state what it did right, what it did wrong, the platform and version. I
will summarise to the list unless you ask me not to for a particular browser.

Chris Lilley
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