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Re: Editing email replies
Re: Editing email replies
Tue, 10 Sep 2002 14:36:04 +0200
Gnus/5.090008 (Oort Gnus v0.08) Emacs/21.2 (i686-pc-linux-gnu)
"pd" <address@hidden> writes:
> "Benjamin Riefenstahl" <address@hidden> wrote in message
>> Hi Peter,
>> Peter Davis <address@hidden> writes:
>> > Well, I know I'm probably in a minority here, but I actually think
>> > HTML e-mail is a pretty good idea. You can get much more readable,
>> > and more *meaningful* content with HTML.
>> Shouldn't that read "more meaningful form"? HTML does nothing about
>> the content as far as I see.
>> One could say that exactly because people should look at their
>> content, they should not distract themself and their readers with
>> extraneous form elements. In my experience HTML is very, very rarely
>> an improvement in email (or Usenet) messages.
> I don't want to prolong this debate too much. However, I couldn't help but
> notice that your reply has quoted part of mine, and contains two blocks of
> text with a blank line between them. Is that form or content? Answer:
> it's both! The fact that text is divided into paragraphs, or that documents
> are divided into sections, possibly with headers in a different typeface, or
> that lists and nested lists can be structured by indentation, etc. are both
> form and content. These things can not be separated as easily as some
> people think. HTML can help to communicate these things more clearly than
> plain text.
I think, HTML-mail is rather a social problem. ("social" includes the
default behaviour of many MUAs here).
To have a html-tag or two for bold or italic text now and then is
something fairly innocent. And to have proper tables or visually
distinguished header-lines could be a real benefit. Sometimes, when
the information involved is very complex, even different font sizes
could be a good thing.
However, most HTML-mail I get is not that innocent. It takes usually
about three times the space the same mail takes in plain text. And for
what? For lots of unnecessary font- and size-specifications. I am not
interested in what the user at the other end thinks which is the most
readable font for her. And I am not interested in her favourite
background-color. I do know myself what font and what background color
are the best for my eyes. I hardly see any HTML-mail in which the HTML
is anything else but cumbersome and annoying.
It is possible to get much of the useful formatting with plain
text-messages: There is a simple, widely used markup-language for
*bold*, _underlined_ or /italic/ text.
|For tables |we have |this sort of |
|tables |with |ascii-graphics.|
If I have to write a long text with headings and sub-headings I
usually resort to different levels of indentation. Gnus users can
have images displayed inline in the message. With Gnus it is even
possible to get a different font and fontification for code-snipplets
in messages. And as soon as UTF-8 is more common, we get lots of
graphics in mail.
I admit that all this is only a workaround. I seem to recall that I
saw an Elisp package somewhere that allows to send HTML-mail with Gnus
using a simple Wiki-like markup-language. Something like this would be
nice: If HTML were used only when meaningful, it could be a great
thing. But since we won't change the major MUAs, we are right to frown
upon HTML in mail and news. My personal experience is that I can not
persuade my friends to use another (better) MUA, but that I can
persuade/force them to turn HTML off.
BTW: does actually anyone use text/enriched in mail or news?
 And we have footnotes, too.
24 Fructidor an 210 de la Révolution
Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité!
- Re: Editing email replies, Charles Muller, 2002/09/01
- Re: Editing email replies, Peter Davis, 2002/09/02
- Re: Editing email replies, those who know me have no need of my name, 2002/09/02
- Re: Editing email replies, Kevin A. Scaldeferri, 2002/09/02
- Re: Editing email replies, Sacha Chua, 2002/09/02
- Re: Editing email replies, Le Wang, 2002/09/02
- Re: Editing email replies, Benjamin Riefenstahl, 2002/09/07
- Re: Editing email replies, pd, 2002/09/04