Re: textured backgrounds

Brian Behlendorf (
Fri, 20 Jan 95 17:14:49 EST

On Fri, 20 Jan 1995, Rob Raisch wrote:
> I would like to make a strong request for the ability of the
> publisher to specify that the stylesheet they provide should
> not/must not be overridden in the browser.

Um... that's sorta like the music companies making the strong request to DAT
deck manufacturers that the end-user "not be able to record any copyrighted
material". It didn't work, and it won't in this medium either, because it's

> Traditional publishing is always a question of control.
> Publishers, to fully embrace the Web as a publishing tool, must be
> given the same controls over their product online as they have in the
> really real world.

I think publishers are willing to realize this is a new medium and that their
traditional methods of "control" are less meaningful. What works in print
doesn't work on TV - likewise what works in either one of these two won't
work on the Web for similar reasons.

> While the creation of tools which release the user from this imposed
> control is a valuable pursuit, for the web to be a truly effective
> publishing vehicle, we need to support the publisher rather than
> dismissing their business and general worldview as retrogressive and
> neolithic.

Believe me we've experienced the limitations here as well, but we prefer
to look at them as unique challenges than roadblocks. Like making an
effective artistic statement in less than 20K of inlined images. Like
organizing your serial streams of information into an architecture
designed more for static documents.

As soon as it's viable, we'll be setting the backgrounds to purple
and the color of the text to pink - but if that's all we wanted to do
we'd be putting up Acrobat files.

That said, I too have experienced resentment in the developers community
towards presentation issues... hopefully style sheets will deliver on what we
need. If not, there are other document formats coming down the pipe, as
net-savvy as HTML (or better), while using presentation rather than
structure as a base.