Re: color: NCSA Mosaic, Netscape, and HTML3

Benjamin Franz (
Tue, 18 Jul 1995 13:40:01 -0700 (PDT)

On Tue, 18 Jul 1995, Michael Johnson wrote:

> >with a 60% market share. Most of the Web page designers that I work with, and I
> >work with many, include Netscape extensions without thinking twice about it.
> Which just goes to show that there are a lot of damned idiots out there
> designing web pages, but we knew that already.

> Yes, I'm being an idealist here. Right now, the web needs idealists, and it
> needs them in large, highly vocal, numbers if we're to get the web back on
> the track that it ought to be on.

Let me cut to the chase:

Write and release a full featured production HTML 3.0 browser for
Windows, Macintosh and Unix (in order of market importance). Or quit
whining that other people aren't spending their money they way you
want them to.

Is HTML 3.0 technically superior to N-HTML? Without a question.

I am a great fan of standards. I also know when someone is playing King

Netscapisms *WILL NOT* go away until equivalent functionality is
in HTML 3.0 and in production browsers for Windows and Mac. All
the debate about whether or not the extensions are good or bad is utterly
moot. There are here. They are staying. That battle is already
completely lost. New browsers are implementing Netscapisms. They are the
*de facto* standard. The Microsoft color extensions to Netscape's <font >
extensions are sure to catch on like wildfire as well.

How did this happen? Easy - they quit *talking* about standards to be
implemented in some distant future and shipped product (no matter how
badly thought out some the extension are). The HTML standards process risks
becoming irrelevant. Not because the standards are bad - because the
people developing them are too damn slow in closing and implementing
them. It is 'committee-itis' at its worst. I have my doubts as to
whether or not HTML 2.0 would be closed today (it *is* closed, right?
Dan?) if Netscape hadn't kicked everyone in the shins.

As for implementing HTML 3.0 - which version? The version that was talked
about last week, or the version that will be talked about next week?
Companies are not going to write browsers to support 3.0 features that
are not STABLE. It cost real money to re-engineer. Especially after shipping.

So close the damn thing. Write a killer HTML 3.0 browser. Kick Netscape and
Microsoft's asses to hell and gone.

Idealism is no substitute for shipping product.

Benjamin Franz