re:Multi-Lingual Project Gutenberg (was: Unicode plain text)

From: Pierre Lewis (
Date: Mon May 26 1997 - 13:09:00 EDT

In message "re:Multi-Lingual Project Gutenberg (was: Unicode plain text)",
'' writes:

> ... HTML is
> controlled by Netscape and Microsoft, and changes every five minutes as each
> attempts to outdo and undercut the other.

I thought at least some baseline HTML came from more neutral bodies
than these two corporations?! Of course, HTML is an acceptable
alternative to plain text *only* if it is corporation-neutral,
widespread, and reasonably stable.

I certainly wouldn't agree to any MSIE-or NN-specific extensions being
used in the texts offered by these projects, but this specific site is
quite legible with lynx, so I assume it doesn't use too many fancy

> Plain text is an interesting alternative to HTML because nobody controls it
> but "just us chickens", and it alone stands a chance of surviving year after
> year, decade after decade, ...

Well put.

> This is not to say that a simple and stable form of HTML -- say 1.0, but
> augmented by some minimally adequate method of coping with character sets --

Since the German Gutenberg project uses latin 1 (the HTML default),
they don't even need any extensions over HTML 1.0.

> ... My printer does not render HTML; my email
> client is not a Web browser. ...

Same here. Still, browsers are getting pretty common, so for a project
Gutenberg, it's probably a reasonable choice.


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