[xml-h] picking up the thread

Dave Pawson davep@dpawson.co.uk
Sun Jan 19 17:41:56 GMT 2003

At 12:11 19/01/2003 -0500, Simon St.Laurent wrote:

>I think I need to get a better idea of who you're considering end users.
>I don't think readers of hypertext will particularly care where their
>links come from,


>  and the most we can really hope for is that they'd at
>least consider selecting links from a context-sensitive pop-up menu,
>say, rather than remaining forever bound to blue underlined text or its

Yes, that's where I'm trying to get to. Blue Underlined Plus (BUP)

Hence the end user to me is the person reading the hyperlinked text.
Equally, the author of a hyperlink is a customer?

>I don't think authors of hypertext are nearly as locked into the HTML
>way of doing things (where all outbound links come from the document
>owner) as you seem to suggest,
I tried not to sound locked in. I'm simply trying to see what an author might
'like' in an alternative system. A natural starting point for me is todays 

>Has hypertext beyond HTML-style hypertext swept the world?  No.  Does
>that mean we should stop talking about possibilities beyond HTML-style
>hypertext?  I really hope not.

Surely the (crass / base ) idea is to generate something that you believe
would be taken up by Microsoft or Netscape?

>Perhaps, though I stopped buying IBM desktops when I realized what an
>incredible nuisance they were to open up and repair.  Straight-headed
>screws and single-use plastic screws were not my friend.  Easy
>maintenance demanded features like a smarter layout and phillips-head
>screws.  I have many of the same issues with cars, and Saturn's decision
>to install motors with a priority on easier owner access to
>owner-maintainable parts made a huge difference in my purchasing
>decision.  (My wife's Miata - augh!)

I believe that to be the maintainers view of the world.
Equally I don't think this view sells product.

>I'm not looking for a "new whizz bang version" at this point.  I'm
>looking for tolerable ways to do hypertext with XML.  I think SkunkLink
>may be a crucial part of the answer, as Micah's taken what we've learned
>from HTML and generalized it minimally.  That's not a recipe for "hot
>cakes", but it does let us get real work done.

OK, it doesn't have bells and whistles, but its a 'new' version of BUP,
or at least an advance on it? Surely that's one thing you/we are looking for?

>My own VELLUM work is not intended for that large an audience,
To which audience do you address your comments then Simon?

> >Maintenance issues are  generally a constraint, not a selling feature
> >in my experience.
> >From my perspective, no one thought about maintenance in HTML, and it's
>been very difficult to build maintenance on top of HTML as a result.

Perhaps the addition of a maintenance layer on top of the end user solution
wasn't addressed? I can't say.
   I'd hope that any solution, once proffered, can then be considered from
a couple of other angles, e.g. authoring and maintenance.

>Selling kludges is definitely difficult.

<grin/> Is it? I know a  company doing very well selling kludges.
Latest offering is a new kludge every two years!

regards DaveP

More information about the xml-hypertext mailing list