Referencing parts of docs (was Including files)

Alan (
Thu, 9 Jun 94 13:34:10 -0400

> It would be extremely desirable (but hard) to be able to resolve URL region
> fragments without fully accessing the document.

Indeed, it is quite hard under the current scheme.

> One idea is positional specs like:
> #{char=24},{char=40}
> #{h1=1},{h1=2}

But people don't (generally) want to jump to arbitrary points in text --
they want to jump to points which have *meaning* and that meaning can often
be expressed within an encompassing scope.

For example -- Go to the chapter on fir trees, or Go to the picture of the

Positional markers are completely luzing in that whenever you change the
text, your markers go to heck. It would be nice to have markers that could
survive across versions of docs if their (intended) targets survived.
Additionally, positional tags presuppose that you got to the material via a
particular path, which is antithetical to the basic tenets of hypertext.

[Bet you didn't think you could be accused of sacrilege in this discussion :]

It seems like a useable way to do sub-document reference would be to
implement some form of tag on HTML markers so that they could be pointed at.
Servers could then send back parts of docs, rather than just blasting whole
schmears down the pike.

--Alan Wexelblat, Reality Hacker, Author, and Cyberspace Bard
Media Lab - Advanced Human Interface Group
Voice: 617-258-9168 Page: 617-945-1842
It's not an information superhighway, it's an information kudzu.