opening a text document to show a .txt file through a browserlink

Grant Edwards grante at
Fri Jan 3 00:32:40 CET 2003

In article <7396d2b2.0301021520.74988ef0 at>, Lemniscate wrote:

> Since this is getting crazy, from now on, I am going to go by
> the definition of program as given on
> (excerpt) 'a program is a specific set of ordered operations
> for a computer to perform...(Note that a program is also a
> special kind of "data" that tells how to operate on
> "application or user data.") '
> Okay, to me, based on this,
> HTML/XML/SGML/ECMAScrpt/ActionScript/C/C++/Java/VB/javascript/Python
> are all programming languages.  The 'mark-up' languages
> represent a specific set of ordered operation for a computer to
> perform (and thus, represent a program; which feels really odd
> to say, to be quite honest).

I'd have to disagree.  HTML does not specify operations.  It
more traditional programming parlance, it specifies delcares

HTML does the equivalent of a C "program" that consists of
nothing but variable declarations:

int i = 8;
char s[] = "Hi there";

Notice that no operations are specified.  Only data types and
values. I wouldn't consider that a "program" using the cited

> Since a program can also be 'data',

IMO, that does not imply that any piece of data is also a
program.  A->B does not mean that B->A.

> It's interesting to note that the definition does NOT:
> 1) specify whether anything has to be Turing complete (heck, I've
> written tons of programs that aren't, but they use python and C, so
> are python and c not languages too>)
> 2) specify the need for the ability to calculate any numbers at all. 
> (once again, I would say 99% of all my codes doesn't calculate
> squares, are they not programs).

The definition does require the ability to specify operations.
IMO, When you write HTML you are only declaring data.  

There are some commonly used (and even officially specified)
conventions about what a browser is expected to _do_ with data
of various types, but the HTML source file does not specify
those operations.

> Feel free to disagree, I do (;-D).

OK :)

Grant Edwards                   grante             Yow!  Yow! Are you the
                                  at               self-frying president?

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