what is SGML and how it related to website design

  • Short for Standard Generalized Markup Language, a system for organizing and tagging elements of a document.
  • SGML was developed and standardized by the International Organization for Standards (ISO) in 1986.
  • SGML itself does not specify any particular formatting; rather, it specifies the rules for tagging elements.
  • These tags can then be interpreted to format elements in different ways.
  • The language that this Web browser uses, Hypertext Markup Language (HTML), is an example of an SGML-based language

Examples of SGML markup


  • simple ASCII
  • markup distinguished from text
  • markup encloses text
  • markup contains other markup

From the Gentle Introduction:

   <poem><title>The SICK ROSE</title>
           <line>O Rose thou art sick.</line>
           <line>The invisible worm,</line>
           <line>That flies in the night</line>
           <line>In the howling storm:</line>
           <line>Has found out thy bed</line>
           <line>Of crimson joy:</line>
           <line>And his dark secret love</line>
           <line>Does thy life destroy.</line>
           <!-- more poems go here    -->

An HTML example:

Doctors recommend this resort for the treatment of
circulatory and central nervous systems illnesses. At
the same time Tusnad Spa is an ideal place for
tourists who enjoy an active relaxation.
The walks to the Hawk's Rock, to Lake St. Anna, to
the Lover's Clearing, the wanderings among fir trees,
the swimming pools with mezothermal water, the
special taste of the local bread rolls, the day and
night cafes, the rides by carriages drawn by horses,
the tours by coach to Lacul Rosu - Bicaz Pass or to
Sovata - Corund are some of the special attractions
of the resort.
<CENTER>St. Anna's Lake <IMG SRC="t51.gif"></CENTER>
The resort has also convenient sporting facilities
for those who would like to play tennis or soccer.
Excellent possibilities for hickings. Sauna and
swimming pool.  Discotheques all evenings.

An example from CES, the Corpus Encoding Standard:

  <div id="Oro.1.2" type=chapter n=1>
    <p id="Oro.1.2.2">
      <s id="Oro.">&Icirc;ntr-o zi
      senin&abreve; &scedil;i friguroas&abreve; de
      aprilie, pe c&acirc;nd ceasurile b&abreve;teau
      ora treisprezece, <name type="person">Winston
      Smith</name>, cu b&abreve;rbia
      &icirc;nfundat&abreve; &icirc;n piept pentru a
      sc&abreve;pa de v&acirc;ntul care-l lua pe sus,
      se strecur&abreve; iute prin u&scedil;ile de
      sticl&abreve; ale <name type="place">Blocului
      Victoria</name>, de&scedil;i nu destul de
      repede pentru a &icirc;mpiedica un v&acirc;rtej
      de praf &scedil;i nisip s&abreve;
      p&abreve;trund&abreve; o dat&abreve; cu el.

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