RE: Is DSSSL-O dead?

Subject: RE: Is DSSSL-O dead?
From: "Reynolds, Gregg" <greynolds@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 27 Mar 1998 11:51:14 -0600
Bravo, Frank.  The problem of DSSSL has always been the lack of good
clear prose, not the alleged difficulty of the language itself.  I
personally have never been able to fathom the "we need to simplify
DSSSL" argument; in fact DSSSL, like scheme, is a model of simplicity
and clarity.  The subject matter it addresses may be complex, but DSSSL
goes a long way to alleviate the complexity; "simplifying" DSSSL will
not simplify the problem domain.  On the other hand, "we need to improve
the way DSSSL is presented and taught" is a no-brainer.  It is indeed
quite hard to learn just from the standard text and scattered samples on
the net; but once you've learned it you'll never want to go back.

One cavil: I think Jade (with emacs) is very well suited for
experimentation, but it needs to be packaged appropriately with the
right supporting materials (I'm working on it).  As for the DTD issue, I
urge you to reconsider.  To me the SDQL side of DSSSL is of equal if not
greater importance than the style side; for this the DTD is essential.
I've also never understood why the DTD is a problem.)  This is an
indirect way of stressing that SGML is the foundation of the whole
thing.  For pedagogical purposes (with to SDQL), I should think the
ability to invent ad hoc document grammars and experiment with
conforming instances would be very useful; it certainly is for me in my
DSSSL explorations.

FWIW, I'm trying to follow Mies' advice "don't talk, build"; so sometime
Real Soon Now I hope to finish some basic intros into various DSSSL
subjects that I work on when I find the odd hour.  Would you consider
throwing together a memo based on what you found in your course for
contribution to the DSSSL doco project?

> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Frank Boumphrey [SMTP:bckman@xxxxxxxxxxxxx]

>     DSSSL is an incredibly powerful language, in fact all the other
> languages evince a "I want to be like Mike" attitude (for non US
> readers
> this refers to a Nike Ad starring Michael Jordan), and I for one would
> hate
> to see it relegated again to the marginalia of document authoring.
>     It strikes me that all the perceived problems are eminently
> "fixable"

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    • Reynolds, Gregg - from mail1.ability.netby (8.8.5/8.6.12) with ESMTP id MAA07828Fri, 27 Mar 1998 12:53:55 -0500 (EST) <=
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      • Paul Prescod - from mail1.ability.netby (8.8.5/8.6.12) with ESMTP id LAA01144Mon, 30 Mar 1998 11:01:29 -0500 (EST)