TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Apr 95 Viewpoint
Volume Number:11
Issue Number:4
Column Tag:The Editor’s Viewpoint

The Editor’s Viewpoint

By Scott T Boyd, Editor

It’s a Flat World Out On The Web

This month I wanted to talk about two things - the World Wide Web, and OpenDoc. While mulling it over, I ran across a Usenet posting by Mark Hanrek of The Information Workshop, and decided to let him have at it. Here’s his guest editorial. We welcome your comments at editorial@xplain.com - Ed stb

And Now Here’s Mark

Every time I communicate about the aspects of the WWW standard that are deeply flawed, I look for existing examples of things done right to prove my point. And every time, OpenDoc comes up.

It will be great if the OpenDoc work is having any influence at all on those who are in control of the Web page standard, because the current WWW path is really quite unfortunate for us all.

I realize that the Web page standard started life as an ad-hoc thing that turned out to be useful, it caught on, and then spread. But now that the rest of the world has grabbed onto it, there really needs to be the courage to stop and set things straight, and to do it properly.

The Fatal Flaw

The Web page people seem to have their heads in a ‘computer printout’ and ‘linear list’ space. The term ‘inline graphics’ is revealing. I get the feeling they thought it was cool to leave out the specification for the absolute position of objects on a page. They ‘leave it up to the interpretation of the particular browser’. On the Macintosh alone, one gets three completely different interpretations using Netscape, Mosaic, and MacWeb respectively.

That’s bad. This is a fatal flaw. And unfortunately, one we will have to live with somehow.

This is the reason no one can create a WYSIWYG HTML editor on the Mac, even though there are umpteen tools on the Mac one can use to author one in short order, such as HyperCard, SuperCard, Prograph, ClarisWorks HTML XTND, class libraries used with Symantec and MetroWerks environments, and eventually, OpenDoc.

Attempting to author an editor puts one in the position of having to take a stand on which is the right way to display things. A support mess. Lots of dissatisfied people. Why bother!

As a result, everyone relents, and has little choice but to rally around one browser (Netscape). This kills competition, and, well, lots of other essential elements.

What’s Happening Here

Web pages are for display, and must be interactive, regardless of what anyone says. If anyone were to go out and design a cross-platform standard for the display of interactive multi-media, and do it in a manner that stood on the shoulders of what we have already learned, addressed itself to the unknown needs of the future, and accommodated the commercial realities that motivated it in the first place......they would be designing and creating something like OpenDoc, not HTML.

When one takes the HTML standard, and performs a comparison against OpenDoc, well, it’s quite shocking. HTML starts us back at the beginning of computer time.

So much wasted energy... So many professionals using their slick WYSIWYG editors on their GUI workstations, struggling with the equivalent of editing Postscript directly to try and get results that look halfway decent after surviving the non-deterministic ‘interpretations’ of Netscape, Mosaic, and other Web browsers.

[shaking head] What a sad mess. I am embarrassed to be associated with it. And powerless of influence it. If you try to tell them anything, then ‘you just don’t understand’. I can’t help but feel the SGML people have their vise grip on things ’cuz it’ll be their last hurrah. :)

You’re dang right I’m bummed. But there is hope. With OpenDoc illuminating a more appropriate way, perhaps life will take one of its funny twists and turns sometime in the near future.

Go Team!

Thankfully, OpenDoc exists, and is one of the most inspired, well-conceived, accommodating, courageous, and honestly handled American technology developments I have ever witnessed in my twenty three years of computer design and engineering.

I say all of this as a vote of confidence, a show of respect, and as encouragement to the OpenDoc team.

Well done.

- Mark Hanrek, The Information Workshop, hanrek@cts.com
0 The Information Workshop http://www.electriciti.com/~infoman/
SuperCard Home Page http://www.electriciti.com/~supercrd/

Sorry You Missed Woodstock?

Get your early reservation in now for MacHack X (June 22-24) and save yourself some dough. Line up some hacking buddies, and get ready for The Best Hack Contest (sponsored by yours truly) - it’s a great way to be a part of the 10th Annual MacHack experience. e-mail expotech@aol.com, check out http://www.hax.com/HackContest and call Expotech at (313) 882-6942.

“If you stay awake the whole time, it’s only 8 cents per minute!”

- Keith Stattenfield, someone who never sleeps at MacHack

“ they give good prizes... :)”

- Doug McKenna, Mathemaesthetics

Food For Thought

Macintosh: Changing the world, one person at a time! (I wish they’d hurry up!)

- Chris De Salvo, phixus@deltanet.com

Does anyone in the Fed understand the concept of time-delayed feedback loops?

- Jorg ‘jbx’ Brown

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

LibreOffice 4.4.3 - Free, open-source of...
LibreOffice is an office suite (word processor, spreadsheet, presentations, drawing tool) compatible with other major office suites. The Document Foundation is coordinating development and... Read more
FoldersSynchronizer 4.2.1 - Synchronize...
FoldersSynchronizer is a popular and useful utility that synchronizes and backs-up files, folders, disks and boot disks. On each session you can apply special options like Timers, Multiple Folders,... Read more
Simon 4.0.2 - Monitor changes and crashe...
Simon monitors websites and alerts you of crashes and changes. Select pages to monitor, choose your alert options, and customize your settings. Simon does the rest. Keep a watchful eye on your... Read more
Cocktail 8.1.2 - General maintenance and...
Cocktail is a general purpose utility for OS X that lets you clean, repair and optimize your Mac. It is a powerful digital toolset that helps hundreds of thousands of Mac users around the world get... Read more
Cyberduck 4.6.4 - FTP and SFTP browser....
Cyberduck is a robust FTP/FTP-TLS/SFTP browser for the Mac whose lack of visual clutter and cleverly intuitive features make it easy to use. Support for external editors and system technologies such... Read more
Herald 5.0.2 - Notification plugin for M...
Note: Versions 2.1.3 (for OS X 10.7), 3.0.6 (for OS X 10.8), and 4.0.8 (for OS X 10.9) are no longer supported by the developer. Herald is a notification plugin for Mail.app, Apple's Mac OS X email... Read more
DEVONthink Pro 2.8.3 - Knowledge base, i...
Save 10% with our exclusive coupon code: MACUPDATE10 DEVONthink Pro is your essential assistant for today's world, where almost everything is digital. From shopping receipts to important research... Read more
Boom 2 1.0.1 - System-wide pro audio app...
Boom 2 is a system-wide volume booster and equalizer app that is designed especially for OS X 10.10 Yosemite. It comes with a smart interface, self-calibrates itself according to your Mac, offers... Read more
Apple Security Update 2015-001 - For OS...
Apple Security Update 2015-001 is recommended for all users and improves the security of OS X. For detailed information about the security content of this update, please visit: http://support.apple.... Read more
Drive Genius 4.0.1 - Powerful system uti...
Drive Genius 4 gives you faster performance from your Mac while also protecting it. The award-winning and improved DrivePulse feature alerts you to hard drive issues before they become major problems... Read more

Unlock Sunshine Girl in Ironkill with th...
Unlock Sunshine Girl in Ironkill with this special 148Apps code Posted by Rob Rich on January 29th, 2015 [ permalink ] Robo-fighter Ironkill has been out on iOS a | Read more »
Crossroad Zombies Review
Crossroad Zombies Review By Jordan Minor on January 29th, 2015 Our Rating: :: CROSSWALKING DEADiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Crossroad Zombies is a rough draft of a cool genre mash-up.   | Read more »
Blood Brothers 2 – Tips, Cheats, and Str...
War is hell: Is it the kind of hell you want to check out? Read our Blood Brothers 2 review to find out! Blood Brothers 2, DeNA’s follow-up to the original Blood Brothers, is an intriguing card collecting / role-playing / strategy hybrid. There’s... | Read more »
Blood Brothers 2 Review
Blood Brothers 2 Review By Nadia Oxford on January 29th, 2015 Our Rating: :: AN AGGRAVATING RELATIVEUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Blood Brothers 2 is built on a simple, solid foundation, but its free-to-play system... | Read more »
I AM BREAD, the Toast of the Town, is Ro...
Have you ever dreamt of being deliciously gluten-y? Do you feel passionate about Rye and Wheat? The guys at Bossa Studios do and that is why they are bringing I AM BREAD to iOS soon. The loafy app will feature all the new content that is being... | Read more »
Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy Remastered R...
Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy Remastered Review By Jennifer Allen on January 29th, 2015 Our Rating: Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad 10 years after its initial release and Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy still feels like a... | Read more »
Evolve: Hunters Quest is a Match-3 That...
Evolve: Hunters Quest is a Match-3 That Has You Hunting Up Some Big Game. Posted by Jessica Fisher on January 29th, 2015 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Destructamundo Review
Destructamundo Review By Jordan Minor on January 29th, 2015 Our Rating: :: WRECKING CREWUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Destructamundo blows up real good.   | Read more »
The Sandbox Gets Exclusive Update, Adds...
The Sandbox Gets Exclusive Update, Adds Invincible Characters Campagin Posted by Tre Lawrence on January 29th, 2015 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Mean Girls: The Game Review
Mean Girls: The Game Review By Jordan Minor on January 29th, 2015 Our Rating: :: FETCHUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad A Mean Girls tower defense game makes way more sense than you’d think.   | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Back in stock: Refurbished iPod nanos for $99...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished 16GB iPod nanos available for $99 including free shipping and Apple’s standard one-year warranty. That’s $50 off the cost of new nanos. Most colors are... Read more
New Good Management Suite Simplifies Enterpri...
Good Technology has announced the availability of the Good Management Suite, a comprehensive cross-platform solution for organizations getting started with mobile business initiatives. Built on the... Read more
15-inch 2.0GHz Retina MacBook Pro (refurbishe...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished previous-generation 15″ 2.0GHz Retina MacBook Pros available for $1489 including free shipping plus Apple’s standard one-year warranty. Their price is... Read more
15-inch 2.5GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for...
Amazon has the 15″ 2.5GHz Retina MacBook Pro on sale for $2319.99 including free shipping. Their price is $180 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model from any reseller. Read more
iPad Turns Five – The ”Book Mystique
Five years ago this week, the late Steve Jobs took the stage at an Apple special press event to unveil the first Apple iPad — a slab-shaped, hand-holdable device that was to shake the personal... Read more
Sale! 15-inch Retina MacBook Pros for up to $...
B&H Photo has the new 2014 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for $150 off MSRP for a limited time. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $1889.99... Read more
Apple refurbished Mac minis for up to $150 of...
The Apple Store has restocked Apple Certified Refurbished 2014 Mac minis, with models available starting at $419. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 1.4GHz... Read more
Apple Releases New Tranche Of OS Updates For...
Apple has released incremental bugfix and security updates for its most recent Mac and iOS versions. OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 Update Apple says this update includes the following improvements: Resolves... Read more
Samsung To Be Main Supplier Of A9 Chips For i...
Korea’s Maeil Business Newspaper reports that Samsung has beat out its chipmaking rivals, Taiwan’s Qualcomm and TSMC, as supplier of chipsets for the next generations of both its own Galaxy S6 and... Read more
Save up to $340 on iMacs with Apple Certified...
The Apple Store has Apple Certified Refurbished iMacs available for up to $340 off the cost of new models. Apple’s one-year warranty is standard, and shipping is free. These are the best prices on... Read more

Jobs Board

SW QA Engineer - *Apple* TV - Apple (United...
**Job Summary** The Apple TV team is looking for experienced Quality Assurance Engineers with a passion for delivering first in class home entertainment solutions. **Key Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions(US) - Ap...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you re also the Read more
*Apple* Systems Engineer - Pre Sales, Educat...
…is responsible for proactively providing technical expertise to drive sales of Apple solutions into assigned accounts. The SE architects, validates, and assists in Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Retail Sales...
As an ambassador of the Apple brand, the ASC is accountable for driving sales performance by: Connecting with customers. Discovering customers' needs and values. Showing Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - Retail Sales...
As an ambassador of the Apple brand, the ASC is accountable for driving sales performance by: Connecting with customers. Discovering customers' needs and values. Showing Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.