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Re: [Fsfe-uk] ReplaceFlash, was: BBC digital curriculum service in Engla

From: Alex Hudson
Subject: Re: [Fsfe-uk] ReplaceFlash, was: BBC digital curriculum service in England
Date: Fri, 15 Oct 2004 10:53:00 +0100

On Fri, 2004-10-15 at 00:28 +0100, MJ Ray wrote:
> > [...] The standards may not change; the browser
> > support sadly does (witness Moz dropping SVG, I guess).
> You've written that a few times, but did they drop it? The 1.7 README 
> says it's new and "not yet enabled" in the mozilla.org builds.

'Dropped it' in the sense of not actively wanting to support it,
although not in the same way as the removal of MNG. ISTR that they were
much more positive about SVG in the past.

Non-free SVG support is derived from the Adobe plugin; on IE I
understand this is quite an advanced plugin (windowless, fully
scriptable, etc.) - this broke in Moz before version 1.0, I think. And
while the rest of the world uses the Adobe system (which relies on
<embed>ing SVG, IIRC), the Moz approach is to inline SVG as a separate
XML document using the namespaces thing (I assume this means you have to
write XHTML, thinking about it ..). So, the "real-world" SVG already out
there doesn't actually work with Moz SVG support turned on anyway. There
is talk of changing this at Moz bug #240408 (the more generic problem).

Maybe saying 'dropping it' is unfair; I keep hearing that Mozilla 1.8 or
something will have it actively turned on at the back-end of this year;
but most Moz users have moved across to Firefox now (I think). Perhaps
it would be more accurate to say 'not rushing to support it', or
something. I think it was more important to them to support in the past,
and things don't seem to have moved terribly quickly. I assume they are
coming up against problems with the complexity of the beast, and whether
or not to release something which only partially supports the 1.0

> > (re: SVG in Helix)
> Hard work, probably. So, there seems to be both Helix and Ambulant 
> which could give rise SMIL+SVG players in the near future? (I know it 
> says Ambulant is a not a consumer player, but could a fork...?)

Well, Ambulant also say that they are looking to develop an SVG backend
too, which would be a useful addition. And, they actually say that
Ambulant do not expect to replace commercial players - not that it
couldn't be one. 

Maybe some enterprising soul could download some of the output of these
projects (I don't think you would need to compile any source even), and
do a feature comparison? 



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