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   Unifying rendering -- Re: Future of Formatting Objects (XSL/FO)

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  • From: "Jon Smirl" <jonsmirl@mediaone.net>
  • To: <xml-dev@XML.ORG>
  • Date: Wed, 14 Jun 2000 11:13:08 -0400

In the past I've written a browser and I've worked on FOP. In both cases I
seem to be writing the same code over and over again.  I keep coming to the
conclusion that the XML/HTML world doesn't have the concept of universal
device drivers in place.

1) Would it be possible to use SVG as the lowest level rendering spec and
then describe XSL-FO and CSS in terms of actions against the SVG DOM? In
other words, could SVG be the device driver language?
2) If CSS and XSL-FO end up specifying exactly the same formatting model,
are any of the browsers going to allow the XLS-FO syntax for controlling the
formatting objects?
3) When CSS3 is complete are people only going to write web pages using only
the <SPAN> tag and then control everything from CSS? wouldn't XSL be nicer?
4) I'm dreaming on this one -- if SVG is presenting the UI in the browser
and it was generated by transforming XML via XSL-FO, and I get an event in
the SVG, can I attach the event handling code the input XML?

Given my experience I believe the success of XSL-FO is dependent on it's
integration into a unified W3C rendering model.  From the outside looking
in, it appears to me that W3C isn't really moving in that direction.

Jon Smirl

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