Re: color: NCSA Mosaic, Netscape, and HTML3

Mike Batchelor (
Tue, 18 Jul 1995 21:43:37 -0400 (EDT)

Lou Montulli once wrote...
> >
> > I don't have a problem with NCSA implementing the Netscape <body>
> > attributes in the new WinMosaic. I have a problem with them documenting
> > them as being part of HTML v3.0, when they clearly are not. NCSA is
> > considered an authority by many people on things to do with the WWW. It's
> > unfortunate enough that Netscape is disseminating mis-information to
> > bolster its bottom line, at the expense of the Web as a whole. That NCSA
> ^^^^^^^^^
> > is contributing to the trend of fragmenting the Web into vendor-specific
> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> > ghettos is doubly unfortunate. I just wrote them a note pointing out the
> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
> > error, and kindly asking them to correct it to reflect the true status of
> > the HTML v3 DTD.
> >
> If multiple vendors are supporting these BODY tags then they
> are obviously not vendor-specific. Perhaps they are just a
> good idea that should be added to the HTML 3 spec?
> :lou
> --
> Lou Montulli
> Netscape Communications Corp.

Added to the HTML v3 spec? Netscape claims their extensions *are* the
HTML v3 spec.

"Netscape Navigator 1.1's new capabilities include:

Advanced layout capabilities using HTML 3.0 tables and graphical
backdrops. These capabilities allow more sophisticated page presentation,
including multiple text columns and flexible image placement." [1]

Netscape's table markups do not conform to the HTML v3 DTD. Nowhere in
the DTD does it indicate that the border attribute may take a value for
thickness, or anything else, for example. There are numerous other
attributes that are nowhere to be found in the HTML 3.0 DTD, not to
mention the "notorious" <center> and <font> tags.

"Netscape Navigator's new HTML tags that enable features like tables and
background images are based upon the HTML 3.0 proposal. Netscape
Communications Corporation is an active participant in all Web-related
standard bodies and is a charter Full Member of the W3 Consortium. Please
read our discussion of Netscape's commitment to open standards, if you're
interested in more information." [2]

Open standards must be documented, so that others may implement them
correctly. As a member of the W3 Consortium, Netscape must know that HTML
is documented using the SGML Document Type Definition. Where is the DTD
for the Netscape 1.1N tags?

I refer you to "The Myth of Netscape and HTML 3.0" [3] for the rest of
this line of discussion, and some more pointers to other points of view.


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