Why Ted Nelson Thinks Markup is WRONG
"Editing is outside the paradigm... Tags throw off the counts." On this one, I can't say I understand Nelson's objection except perhaps to the extent that markup gets in his way if he tries to point into marked-up documents using character counts. I edit XML (including these slides) by hand, and just can't see this one.
Transpublishing a potential conflict
Partly an intellectual property issue, partly a set of difficulties brought on by the complex mechanics of including context outside of the including author's control, this set of issues should be familiar to anyone who's thought hard about external parsed entities or XInclude. Nelson's solutions to these - parallel markup and tag override - both foreshadow possibilities for solving the third problem.
Structures that don't fit
This is the toughest of Nelson's criticisms to address in markup. Nelson hates the insistence on clean hierarchical structures - "When SGML fanciers say 'structure,' they mean structure where everything is contained and sequential, with no overlap, no sharing of material in two places, no relations uncontained." He would prefer that we ask "What is the real structure of a thing or a document?" and notes that "Enforcing sequence and hierarchy simply restricts the possibilities."
A content layer, a structure layer, and a "special-effects-and-primping layer" make it possible to have the information cake and eat it too. XML, for the most part, mixes at least the first two of these layers.
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