Re: color: NCSA Mosaic, Netscape, and HTML3

Chris Tilbury (
Tue, 18 Jul 1995 16:23:25 BST

On 18 Jul 95 at 10:27, Ian S. Graham wrote:

[someone else wrote ...]
> > Netscape color extensions (like many other netscape extensions)
> > are hot air and presumptiously defined.
> >
> > Unfortunately, style sheets are still being defined :)

> Hmm.... so something that is implemented, operational and popular is
> "hot air", while "still being defined" stylesheets are not???

No; Netscape's color extensions are hot air, and presumptiously
defined, because they [Netscape] seem to have (or have had) the idea
that by implementing these elements in their own browser - elements,
I might add, which are entirely platform-dependent and conflict
/wildly/ with some of the fundamentals principles guiding the
development of HTML, version 3, those being "Platform
Independence"[1], "Content not Presentation Markup"[2], and "Support
for Non-Visual Media"[3] - that they can somehow "guide"[4] (force?) the
path of the standardisation process, presumably by suggesting that
since so many pages have been written with these attributes and tags,
not to incorporate them would be unfair (since most of the Netscape
tags or attributes are terribly appropriate as HTML).

On the other hand, stylesheets are not any of these precisely because
they are still being defined - no any one current implementation is
making any claims of being the definitive "standard", and in fact, by
their nature, every implementation could be completely different
without it mattering one iota. (The stylesheet for a graphical
browser is hardly going to be appropriate for a browser which uses
speech synthesis, for example).

The fact that something is implemented, operational and popular does
not necessarily make it either appropriate or correct.



[1] para 19
[2] para 20
[3] para 22


[4] para 2, specifically:
"Netscape Communications will continue to work with the
appropriate standards bodies, including W3C and the authors
of other WWW browsers, in an attempt to have these
extensions available in all browsers in the near future."



Chris Tilbury, Estates Office, University of Warwick, UK, CV4 7AL
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