Re: gopher can read www links right now!

Tim Berners-Lee (timbl)
Fri, 7 Feb 92 17:58:24 GMT+0100

Begin forwarded message:

Subject: gopher can read www links right now!
Date: Fri, 07 Feb 92 09:15:54 -0500

> ho ho ho! take a look at this:

> www gopher://

> accidental compatibility...

Ha! There's a man who knows what's going on.... of course the slash just before
the GET is interpreted as a gopher type character which happens to be
invalid, so www just reads the document as plain text. With versiuon 1.1c or later
(no, it's not released yet but I will if you want it), an "h" field means "html
format". So I can say:(spot of the difference)

www gopher://

File format

The system uses marked-up text to represent a hypertext document when one is
being stored in a file or transmitted over the network. Some of the formats
available are illustrated in a test hypertext[1]. The hypertext mark-up
language is an SGML format. This means basically that it uses angle brackets
to delimit language constructs embedded within the text. The particular
language 1 the set of tags and the rules about their use, and their
significance 1 is not part of the SGML standard. There being no standard on
this, we have adopted a set which seems sensible. Let's call them HTML --
hypertext markup language. HTML is not an alternative to SGML, it is a
particular format within the SGML rules (an SGML "DTD"). We have included in
HTML tags from the SGML tagset used at and once supported at CERN by quite
a lot of documentation and SGML examples.[2] The HTML parser will ignore
tags which it does not understand, and will ignore attributes which it does
not understand of CERN-SGML tags.

Basically, Gopher addresses and w3 addresses are fairly interconvertable. And you
are right, http and gopher protocols are very similar. [The "w" field can only be
used in a gopher menu. It means "The selector string is in fact a w3 address, don't
expect a port number or host address to follow it".]