Re: Multiple Stylesheet Notations

Benjamin C. W. Sittler (
Tue, 25 Jul 1995 19:14:36 -0600

Daniel W. Connolly wrote:
>In message <>, Benjamin C. W. Sittler
>>How can a document author specify more than one format of stylesheet?
>In short: format negotiation.
>Might I ask what sources you consulted before giving up and posting to
>this list? I'm disappointed that folks are unable to find accurate
>information on format negotiation, and I'm trying to figure out how to
>fix it.

WHERE??? I had to ask on this list to find out how to do it...
unfortunately, all I've been able to find is a partial answer: use
document.multi. All by itself, this doesn't seem to work... see [1] for an

>I'll answer that question with a question:
> For example, I have a graphic image in GIF, TIFF, and J-PEG
> that I would like sent to the browser depending on which
> format the browser can handle. How can I do this?
> I have HTML with tables, and another version without tables.
> How do I send the right data to the right clients?
> I have a bandwidth-intensive version of my data, and
> a low-bandwidth version of my data. How do I send the
> low-bandwidth version to the folks on slow links, and
> the rich version to the folks with high-speed connections?
> I have a French, English, and German version of my documents.
> How can I send the right one depending on the language of
> the reader?

I'd love to find acceptable answers to these questions... they could save me
many hours of coding. I found some possible solutions using HTTP headers;
unfortunately, I can't write the HTTP headers for my documents... or if I
can, I haven't found out how yet, except for CGI scripts, and running a
script every time the document is accessed implies far more overhead than
I'm willing to incur.

Also, I'd like to point out that the document describing the URL standard,
referred to by [2], does not exist.

I always look at when I have an HTML-related question, and I only
end up posting when I can't find what I'm looking for there, either because
it doesn't exist (the case with the URL spec) or I couldn't find it. (This
was the case with implementing multiple-format negotiation in HTML.) I have
been unable to find an index, table of contents, or search engine for, except for the mailing lists. How am I supposed to find the
information I'm looking for? I couldn't find a link to the "HTML Design
Constraints" page because I had no idea what the URL was or where in the
document tree (web?) it was hidden.


P.S. Our site uses the CERN httpd.