Success factors up until the near future includes "Tim's original
conception of HTML is that it should be about as expressive as RTF",
the robustness of the HTML language and browsers, browser ease of use
(everyone I have shown it to [NCSA Mosaic] understands how to use
immediately!), easy to establish servers and the bridging to
In the future, I expect several other factors to become important. These
1) the willingness of large information providers to subsidize the
2) the affordable creation and maintenance of webs
3) continual browser and server improvements and platform support
In essence, I do believe that commercial web applications are necessary
and that improvements to the interchange language, APIs, etc should
work to support commercial needs. Finally, do this while keeping the
technology accessible as it is today.
How do I see this impacting the design of HTML+?
* expressive - every company has an "corporate identity", every publisher
has their "look". We need style sheets if we keep the language
semantic (and I hope we do). We could also use an style element
like the Table of Semantic Styles in SDL.
* programmable and portable - document publishers have to know what is
widely supported and what is not. (the same phenomena as PC software)
* linkage - lots of consideration needs to go into links. The maintenance
of links is a real problem in my community (online UNIX technical
document publishers). At least one level of abstraction should be
required and specified.
Please let me know if I am off the mark as these thoughts are the basis
for making judgments about HTML+.