>> Then why don't you just implement one of the many style sheet
>> proposals that are on the table. This would pretty much solve the
>> problem if done correctly.
> So then I get to tell people, "Well, you get to learn *this* language
> to write your document, and then you get to learn *that* language for
> actually making your document look like you want it to." Oh, they'll
> love that.
> Marc's viewpoint: style sheets are an artificial construct inflicted
> on us because of the whole non-presentation philosophy we've been
> using (more or less, but enough to keep this particular set of
> problems alive), which I argue is wholly inappropriate for document
> delivery front-ends and is crippling our system. Why not strip out a
> level of complexity (and user headeaches) by having our front ends
> simply handle a layout format suitable from the ground up for
> front-end display of documents? Publishers can still use SGML out the
> wazoo on the back end if they want; if they don't and all they want is
> documents that look the way they want them to look, we don't inflict
> it on them.
I believe there is room for style sheets as a means for giving publishers
tight control over appearence, especially when printing documents out.
However, I am also looking at ways of including style attributes in
the document head and other elements to give authors a simpler means
of differentiating their documents. This would cover:
o background color and texture (watermarked paper)
o text color, font family and relative sizes
o vertical and horizontal spacing for each element
o use of images for corporate logo's and navigation
buttons in a document specific toolbar separate
from the document window area
What Marc is forgetting to mention is that most markup formats were
designed with paper in mind and assume fixed page sizes. We are
offering users much greater control with resizable windows, and
preference selections for document appearence. The most important
factor though is the far greater degree of platform independence
that is achieved through a logical representation than is achieved
with existing formats like Postscript and RTF. We will be able to
offer equivalent control over fonts via URN based shareable resources.