Re: Inlined image format
Date: Tue, 25 Jan 94 16:20:13 EST
Original-From: hotsand!ellson (John Ellson)
Message-id: <9401252120.AA08919@hotsand.dacsand>
Subject: Re: Inlined image format
Content-Length: 2740
> From: (Jon E. Mittelhauser)
> At 02:45 PM 1/25/94 EST, wrote:
> >
> >Perhaps I'm missing something, but why does the capability of the
> >browser affect the viewability of a document?  Why do all the browsers
> >have to have the same capabilities?
> Because they are viewing the document in the browser?  They don't
> *have* to have the same capabilities but most document authors want
> to know a minimum set that all will support.  I (as an HTML author)
> know that if I create a document using inlined gifs that any browsers
> which support inlined images (e.g. GUI browsers) will display the 
> document as I intend.  The same cannot be said for any arbitrary
> format...

As an author, I should be able to assume that the browser can handle
any format as an inline component.  (text, image, sound, movie,
executable tSipp for local 3D rendering....)

The browser should either handle it directly, or hand it off to an
external viewer.  Isn't that an issue that each browser and/or each user
can deal with independently under the control of .mailcap or similar

> >If a browser is extended to view TIFFs inline why can't I indicate
> >that in the .mailcap?  If the browser is not capable of viewing inline
> >then the .mailcap can direct the image to an external viewer.
> You are being extremely X-centric here.  Most of the world isn't running
> X-windows.  

Am I being X-centric?  I certainly didn't mean to be since I also value the
use of non-X browsers.   In what way are MIME types and the .mailcap
facility specific to X-windows?  Isn't something similar used on PCs,
Macs, Amigas?

> Also, inlined images and external images have a very different use in
> practice.  If I find a document that has 10 inlined images that are
> links to other pages or files and they are launched into 10 external
> windows how in the world do I know which is which?!?

As a proposal couldn't you use the delayed image mechanism of Mosaic?
i.e. if the image requires an external view (according to .mailcap)
then the user has to click on an icon to display that image.

My other proposal, which was perhaps X-centric, was that the browser
just provide an inline window that an external image program would use
for its display.  (But since this is a browser specific proposal that
doesn't affect document authors, it doesn't matter if it is X-centric.
Anyway, couldn't the same concept be used in other windowing schemes?)

> From: Liam Relihan <>
> In addition, external filters are not likely to be aware of things like
> overlaid anchors, etc.

But the inline icon can handle the overlaid anchors, just as in
delayed image loading.  

John Ellson
AT&T Bell Labs