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   RE: [xml-dev] Common Word Processing Format

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Ok.  First, the interest is not RSS/Atom but HTML/XHTML. 
Then possibly all of the embeddable formats.  I don't 
edit graphics in Word.  I import them.  Would that be 
different for ODF?  Probably not.  Blogs are interesting 
in that the sites I am familiar with have the editor 
in the site.  Is it good enough (remember question c) 
for most word processing apps?  No. Probably not even 
half.  On the other hand, there are existence proofs 
for using HTML for high end publishing.   Is that the 
right level of complexity for the majority of word 
processing given, as a poster stated on Scoble's blog, 
that it doesn't have 5 to 10% of the features of a 
word processing format?  (The point is to deliver to 
the end user only as much functionality as they need 
for a task to keep the complexity low and costs 

As to a structural editor per your description:  that's 
ok for some.  Some really don't want to know much more 
than titles, lists, sections, subsections, paras, tables, 
and image editing.  And if functionality can be loaded 
on demand given the access and the credit card #, 
;-), that is enough.  What one wouldn't want from the procurement 
perspective is to be forced to buy from the high end of the 
pricelist to get the basic stuff for every desk.

From where I sit, Bray's namespaced thought experiment 
makes sense.  Always has.  Structural editors make 
sense.  Always have (been doing this a long long time). 
If I don't want spreadsheets, I don't want the spreadsheet 
editor.  I might want a renderer because I can't control 
what people send me. I might only want a spreadsheet 
editor occasionally.

None of this seems mysterious or provocative.  What is 
questionable is if the argument that having open formats 
guarantees a market.   Having an open containerized format 
might but as in the example of DoD, when the technology 
changes or the environment changes, the market model changes.

So when comparing ODF and Office, one might want to compare 
them for the cost of initial installs and just-in-time upgrades.
I sort of doubt the Massachusetts Senate and/or executive 
branch think in those terms.  The ITheads can.  But both should 
understand costs.  Monocultures not only expose the user to 
viral risk and can restrict access to public information, but 
they are lousy at cost control.


From: Robert Koberg [mailto:rob@koberg.com]

Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:

> If it is as claimed that HTML/XHTML only has 5 to 10% of the features 
> of word processing:
> 1.  What is the world's largest publishing medium (the web) so successful 
> using only 5 to 10% of the features of word processing?

I sense a logical fallacy (not really sense it, just have experienced 
it). It is not that only 5-10% are used, it is that 5-10% are made 
useable by the software that allow publishing to web. Blog entries are 
not the be all and end all...

This is why I said that the battle is for useable 'write' programs. The 
web doesn't have it yet. I would also say that desktop pub systems 
dont't either, but...

When an organization matures in its web publishing there are needs for 
more structure (and, of course there is a need for freeform). When 
structure is needed it is welcome as it saves the user time and resolves 
confusing choices. There is also the need to be able able to change 
templates/style and not use drones to do it.

I would not want to see what I think you are proscribing. I want to see 
a good WYSIWYG, schema validating editor that can choose between 
different content types (FAQ, Callout, Gloosary-Item, whatever) and 
allows for a free-for-all content type.

Content pieces should be separate. They should be able to be placed 
where needed in whatever presentation.

(Our CMS, http://livestoryboard.com , has that now except I want 
something that is more usable for those accustomed to MSWord). Xopus is 
the best available currently. I wish there was better and cross 



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