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September 23, 1998

WEB STANDARDS PROJECT CAMPAIGNS FOR NGLAYOUT

By CBR Staff Writer

On the eve of Boston’s Web98 conference, the Web Standards Project (CI No 3,471) has launched a public campaign to encourage Netscape to include its next-generation layout engine, NGLayout, in Navigator 5. As we reported last week (CI No 3,497), the Mozilla team now responsible for the public source version of Navigator doesn’t think NGLayout will be ready in time for the version 5 launch. However, a return visit to the Mozilla web site reveals that the team has taken some pains to clarify its position. It has disturbed us to read recently in some misinformed press articles that NGLayout is ‘behind schedule’ or some other such thing, they write, nothing could be farther from the truth – we’re on an aggressively rapid schedule. It’s still not fast enough for the WSP. NGLayout is intended to replace Navigator’s current layout engine, Mariner. The new software should support HTML 4, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) and the Document Object Model (DOM). The WSP was formed precisely in order to get browser makers to adhere more closely to World Wide Web Consortium standards, and particularly HTML 4, CSS and DOM. With NGLayout, Netscape has the opportunity to take the lead in resolving many of the problems that have plagued web development, said WSP project leader George Olsen in a statement. We’d like to see that happen sooner rather than later. Accordingly, the WSP’s I Want My NGLayout! campaign is designed raise public awareness of the need for better standards support in Navigator 5 – and, presumably, to be yet another thorn in Netscape’s already bristling side.

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