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Subject: RE: [docbook-tc] [Gary Cornelius] Table Simplification

> From: Gary Cornelius [mailto:gary@cornelius.bz] 
> Sent: Wednesday, 16 March, 2005 18:42
> Subject: Table Simplification
> I would like to propose replacing Cals and XHTML tables in 
> Docbook with a more simplified 'block and frame' model?...
> I have found it pretty do-able on a number of fairly
> complex projects to use a more simplified block model
> for authoring and then map to multiple tables/grid formats
> on output!! 
> I believe a 'block and frame' model could be more easily 
> mapped into full Cals, XHTML tables, div+CSS tables,
> WordML tables etc. at the output stage
> by using modern stylesheets such as XSLT 2.0

[I had to check the date to make sure it wasn't
April 1 for a minute there.]

I don't think there is very much of a chance at all
that we could come up with a new table model that
would get any traction in the world at large.

There is so much legacy in table markup to say 
nothing of the tool issue.

And the idea that we'd replace the CALS and HTML 
table models (i.e., remove them) runs into even
more issues with legacy and learning curves.  If
we really did that, and people felt they had to
follow suit (they wouldn't), it would kill DocBook.

There have been, in fact, other simple table models.
Arbortext has had one since 1986 and there is an
old AAP [Association of American Publishers] one
that was adopted by some in the late 80's.  But no
one seriously considers trying to adopt them on any
real project these days.

If we thought it made sense to consider allowing 
another table model (and I'm not sure it does),
the XSL-FO table model is the most powerful of
the models with any recognition these days while
being pretty simple to use.


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