Sat, 19 Jul 2003 23:54:25 +0200
Lars Hellström's message of "Sat, 19 Jul 2003
Aachen University of Technology (RWTH)
Lars Hellström <[log in to unmask]> writes:
> At 15.54 +0200 2003-07-19, Torsten Bronger wrote:
>> The intersting thing are editors for *special* XML applications.
>> Let me dream a bit: All scientific publishers agree on an XML
>> format and order a simple-to-use GUI program that can create
>> these documents. It runs on Linux, Windows, Mac, etc (because
>> it's simple itself). Authors can download it and write their
>> articles with it.
> Hmmm... Apart from copyright and the technical issue of using XML
> as file format,
> this sounds a lot like actual state of things with MS Word today
> (it certainly dominates non-mathematical scientific
> publishing). We know from experience however that it is no good.
Apart from the XML syntax it has nothing to do with MS Word's XHTML
derivative. It doesn't contain any layout information for example.
It is more like DocBook, possibly with a little bit visual markup in
some (inline) places.
>> Then there are no authors anymore that use exotic file formats,
>> format their text in a very strange way, no employees of the
>> publishers have to re-type the articles, authors don't lose time
>> with superfluous typographical fine tuning, guideline can be made
>> much simpler, archiving and retrieving is much simpler etc.
> How on earth is changing a technical detail (using XML instead of
> the admittedly exotic "Word memory dump" format) which most users
> are supposed to never encounter going to effect such dramatic
> improvements in author practices? (Of course, this bit could be
> where the dreaming is applied.)
Logical markup. The author would be *forced* to focus on contents
and structure. There is no list of 150 fonts to choose from
anymore, and no way to use an awful baseline skip, or to fake a
glyph with fancy field tricks. They must obey to a big part of the
guidelines, no matter whether they want to or not, and whether they
are typographically competent or not.
Torsten Bronger, aquisgrana, europa vetus