Parsability (re: Thinking about style sheets)

H&kon W Lie (
Wed, 3 May 1995 10:18:05 +0500

Michal Young writes:

> > Hakon's format is broken into manageable, logical chunks
> > that allow for extensibility and ease of parsing.
> Although these examples look more human-readable than the lisp-like syntax
> of a previous dssl-lite proposal, it seems to be a step backward in
> extensibility and ease of parsing.

So far, the emphasis has been on designing a language that people,
with a minimal knowledge of HTML and typography, will understand
intuitively. I've written a parser for the style sheet language, and
so has Bill Perry. It's not too hard.

When the style sheet language settles down a bit, we will have to
describe it using a formal scheme. Formalism may even influence the
final specification, but shouldn't be our main concern at this point.

> there
> should be a very clear demarcation of a kernel long-lived style sheet
> language from a set of particular facilities that match contemporary DTP.

Agreed. Also the support for non-visual media will require
extensibility both in the list of setable properties and the
measurement units:

H1: volume = 50db

While keeping the core (address: property = unit) intact.


Hakon W Lie, WWW project CERN, CH-1211 Geneva 23