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Re: LYNX-DEV ALIGNment problem

From: Christopher R. Maden
Subject: Re: LYNX-DEV ALIGNment problem
Date: Mon, 16 Dec 1996 15:15:14 GMT

[Chris Maden]

> Correct, and when authoring, the DTD is what should be followed.
> However, given the large amount (90%, per Sturgeon) of crap out
> there, Lynx shouldn't necessarily follow the DTD, but should follow
> common sense.

[Hiram Lester]

> I don't know if I necessarily agree with that... One of the great
> things about Lynx is that it IS standards based.  The idea behind
> DTD's in the first place is that if all browsers complied strictly
> to them, and users created valid documents, documents would be
> formatted identically for all browsers.

That's exactly *not* the point.  I have Mac Mosaic set up at home to
give me my <h1>s in green centered Helvetica, and body text in black
left-justified Palatino.  I don't think everyone would want that, nor
do I want everyone else's color schemes.

The idea behind DTDs is that the information is identified
*semantically*, and that users can choose presentational options that
best communicate those semantics *to them*.

> Alas this isn't the case, but I think Lynx is a step in the right
> direction with its strict interpretations of most things.

Standards-based is good.  However, the sins of the author should not
be visited on the reader - that is, making a document unusable or ugly
for the end-user because the author screwed up does not benefit
anyone.  It's true that too many people use their browsers as
validators, but the only thing to do for that is to flag bad HTML and
carry on as best one can.

In this case, we were discussing Lynx's behavior when a <p> is
terminated by an <h2> or an <hr>.  In that case, it's purely a
presentational difference as to how that's interpreted, but not a big

A better example is the case of a <form> that starts inside a table,
but has its submit button outside the table.  Lynx's current rigorous
approach, commendable as it is, punishes the user by not permitting
him to submit the form.  True, calling attention to bad markup is a
good thing, but the end-user typically has no control over the markup
he views.

[Chris Maden]

> Claris's is... non-Scottish, let's say; and NavGold is pretty bad,
> too.

[Hiram Lester]

> "non-Scottish"?  Maybe that's a reference to SCTV and the "All
> Things Scottish store" (or whatever) where "If it's not Scottish
> it's crap!"... ? :)


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