Draft minutes from Stockholm

Eric W. Sink (eric@rafiki.spyglass.com)
Fri, 28 Jul 95 17:23:10 EDT

Here are minutes from the WG meeting in Stockholm, as recorded by Tim
Berners-Lee. I still need to do the usual clean-up editing before submitted
them to the IETF.

BTW, if you were at the meeting in Stockholm, please send me mail if you
have not done so already. I forgot to send the roster around. I have not
yet submitted the roster to the IETF, because I'm still getting quite a few
"I was there" messages.

Minutes of the HTML WG meeting at the 33rd IETF

Chair: Eric Sink
Minutes: Tim Berners-Lee

1. Agenda

META element
Superscript and subscripts (SUP-SUB)
Internationalization (I18n)

2. Charter

The charter is very out of date. The past milestones
have where relevant passed. New milstones are needed
as in May the group decided to tackle remaining HTML levbel 3
and 4 extensions as seperate documents.

Milestones will be set as extensions are taken on.

ThF issue of MIME type registration cannot be settled until the
BOG at 19:30 about MIME type registration in general.

3. Tables

A draft was released just before the deadline for this meeting.
Few had read it. None of those who had read it had problems
with it. Two people felt that they might have commenst if they were to
read i. The draft will be left for review on the net for 30 days
and then be sent to the IESG for last call for proposed standard.

4. Meta Tag etc.

Stu Weibel/OCLC presented the current problem. META elements had
been proposed within the HEAD element, but many current browsers do not ignore
contenst of unknown elements within HEAD.

Stu presented requirements that old browsers should ignore metadat, and that new
browsers should be able to parse its complex nested structure.

he proposed 3 alternbatives:

4.1 Fix HEAD so that bwrosers must ignore content of unknown elements within it
4.2 Leave HEAD "broken" and introduce a new CITATION tag with the
property that unknown tags within CITATION would be ingored;
4.3 Fix "META" so that unknown META content is ignored.

Another proposal was to move the metadat out of eth HTML altogether
into another part of a multipart (LM) or into another linked document (TBL).

The problem of l;egacy browers putting metadata information on the screen
does not do away with 4.1 to 4.3.
One could use SGML attributes but the probelm then is that
SGML restricts the value of teh attribute to limit
for example nested elements within it, unless
one used a non-SGML syntax.

An extendable tagset was required for metadata, with a DTD for each,
but this would require a browser who didn't understand the DTED
in question to use some heuristic above SGML
to know how to skip the metadata.

The metadata fields have been in discussion and flux for so long it
would seem sensible to isolate their specification from the
HTML spec. Using a multipart part or a linked document would
allow the metadata language to vary independently of the data language.
Another sugge3stion was to retrieve metadat with a META method in HTTP.
Would this be too complicated?

Without some concrete proposals, it is difficult to discuss
this in detail.

There is a real proposal for metadata syntax in the URC group.
There is a solution to resolve the unknown HEAD element but
it involves look-ahead (-LM).

Stu Webel will write up a draft by August 1.


The current consensus allows no nested SUP and SUB but does allow
anchor and highlighting within a SUP or SUB.

Stu Weibel will put this consensus into a very short draft by Aug 1.

6. New agenda item: Process, document version naming.

The consensus was that changes to the spec should be small standards
and that "glue" documents defining new standard levels in terms of those RFCs
would be released from time to time.

7. Internationalization.

Currently Netscape and Spyglass Mosaic will accept different
character encoidings. They use a user-overridable heurstic to
guess the character set, but will work properly if they
see a charset= parameter on the MIEM content-type.
No one in the roomwas doing anything to further any spec writing here,
and previous volunteers had gone quiet. Dan Connolly volunteered
to see to the writing of a spec for the charset parameter, by delegation
or action as need be, by December.

Language tags were a different issue. They should not be lumped
together with "charset" or SUP/SUB as one would hold the otehr back.
Some work on laguage tags has been done and should be

There is a problem with unicode that it uses the same code to
represent different glyphs as a function of the language being Chinese
or Korean. EBT solve this problem by regarding it as a font
choice issue in a style sheet. Noone else had a solution.

Dirk-Willem van Gulik/Centre for Earth Observation of the EC
offers a database of multinational documents
as test data to developers in the group.

8. Any Other Business

Ther is a draft (*eastlake*) on putting information about
payment into HTML etc.

Eric W. Sink
Senior Software Engineer, Spyglass