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Re: lynx-dev New <BR> collapsing patch

From: Philip Webb
Subject: Re: lynx-dev New <BR> collapsing patch
Date: Mon, 17 Aug 1998 00:23:56 -0400 (EDT)

980816 Dave Eaton wrote: 
> On Sun, 16 Aug 1998, Philip Webb wrote:
>> (2) there is no `valid, correct' behaviour, since the specs are broken;
> I think you can see a number of us dissagree with you
> that the spec is "broken" and believe current Lynx behavior is "correct",

it's not clear that anyone other than you disagrees
the specs are inconsistent & unclear;
if they do, they should offer some analysis of the specs themselves.

> though we have no objection to alternate renderings in the code,
> so long as they are optional, configurable, and not the default.

i've reviewed the thread(s) & don't see a majority:

  for keeping current behaviour as default: yourself, LV, MW, NHE (4);
  for not collapsing <BR><BR> by default: AG, DH, JM, DW, me (5).

i'm NOT claiming a majority of lynx-devers NOR suggesting we hold votes,
but there is a real range of opinion & so far no consensus.

there's also the little matter of rational argument.
i presented  4  careful analyses of the HTML 4.0 specs
& the real-life situation re <BR><BR> & document authors
(980812 1716 (to which you replied), 980812 2026 (reply to you),
 980815 1837, 980816 1902):
you are the only contributor to have replied to my criticism of the specs,
to which i responded without further comment from you;
no-one has addressed the real-life state of affairs
in which the typical document author has very little knowledge of HTML
& very little time or inclination to learn about its finer points.

you made a distinction `document structure vs page layout'
& JM distinguished `procedural/structural mark-up systems',
which i may understand (are they the same distinction BTW?),
but if you believe more than a very tiny minority of document authors
have the slightest knowledge of or interest in such things,
you simply don't live in the real world:
even highly professional newspapers haven't time for it,
eg Washington Post (uses ../ ) & Financial Times (London) ( <BR><BR> ).
> Now, would it be OK to move on to other topics?
if you've run out of arguments, by all means move on to something else.

the solution is simple: a run-time configurable choice (needs programming)
or at least changing the  lynx.cfg  default to match real-life out there.

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