HTML 2.0 IETF Draft comments

Frank da Cruz (
Wed, 30 Nov 94 17:51:13 EST

Nice job! My only noticeable criticism of it is that it is only capable of
representing Western European Roman-Alphabet languages. Already there are
imcompatible "national-language" (Hebrew, Japanese, Russian) Web browsers
popping up. The name "World Wide Web" should mean what it says (unlike, say
"World Series"). Let's do it right the first time and support all writing

But how? Obviously the world is not ready for Unicode or ISO 10646 as the
character set in which to write HTML documents. It's not even ready for
Latin-1. Therefore, "special" characters must be referred to by standardized
names written in the International Reference Version of ISO 646 graphic
character set, i.e. ASCII.

But what names to use? Each ISO character-set standard has a long verbose
name for each character. Some of the standards also provide "short names".
There is much controversy about how to name characters.

Why not propose the easiest thing, and the one which is closest to what
HTML already uses, and supposedly also MIME: the "Keld Joern Simonsen" system
of mnemonics (hopefully the forthcoming new corrected one).

But whatever you do, please don't gloss over the issue or postpone it for
"future study" -- you'll leave out 90% of the planet. We don't want WWW
to mean Web of the Western World.

One more thing -- shouldn't this document address the issue of the
proliferation of incompatible HTML extensions? I mean, shouldn't this sort
of thing be "deprecated" ?-)


- Frank