CSS and XSL - competition

Heikki Toivonen heikki at citec.fi
Tue May 25 19:27:47 BST 1999

> Paul Prescod wrote:
> Heikki Toivonen wrote:
> implementation. Here XSL
> > is doing harm - all the hype moved to XSL which is an important
> contributor
> > to the fact that we have not seen complete CSS implementations.
> Do you have any evidence to this effect? It seems a key point to this
> entire debate but I don't see any evidence for it.
> How much of the Mozilla effort has been spent on XSL? As far as I
> understand their CSS implementation is getting very good but they haven't
> even started on XSL yet. The "XSL Bounty" will add new resources to the
> picture: that's a good thing, right?

So far XSL effort in Mozilla has been very little. Some people have
investigated the code and asserted that it shouldn't be too difficult to add
XSL FO support to Mozilla now that CSS is in a good shape (I saw a  post a
while back that 100% of CSS1 features were in, it just needed bug fixing).
But as far as we know, nobody has really tried it either.

A couple of days ago we had discussion opening on the APIs needed to
implement XSLT processes in Mozilla, but it was a bit bad timing because
Michael's article appeared at the same time.

The XSL bounty is really too little to draw any serious effort (unless the
price has gone up since XTech'99).

In any case, I think Mozilla is in a good position now to start thinking
about XSL if that is what is wanted. Why? Because it has complete CSS1
support (with a fair amount of CSS2). The style people will be freed from
implementing CSS and can move to other tasks if they so wish. I am still not
saying I like XSL but at least Mozilla is "morally" in a better situation to
implement XSL than any other organization.

> And if we are talking about IE, are you really going to claim that a
> company with cash reserves rivaling the debt of some countries cannot
> implement both? Microsoft was slacking off of its responsibility to

You are correct, I was being a bit naive... I thought about this after I had
posted but since I saw no replies I thought "oh well".

For giant companies it is a not an issue of human resources, but more an
issue of politics and finance (as you also imply below).

> properly implement CSS before they were even interested in XML. As is
> often the case, they will implement the minimum required to get by (check
> out the namespaces implementation!). Note also that IE 5.0 supports
> proprietary Microsoft CSS extensions. Perhaps they haven't given up on CSS
> but are merely "embracing" and "extending" it. In any case, that's an
> issue you should take up with Microsoft, not with the XSL WG.

Do you think the XSL WG and has suffered from Microsoft embracing XSL?

  Heikki Toivonen

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