Kuopio Technical Report on SGML - Summary

This list is a part of a report published in Finnish as a technical report of the Department of Computer Science and Applied Mathematics, University of Kuopio, Finland. The aim of the report was to give a brief overview of electronic text and its processing by computers. The main part of the report is a section that contains a short description and typical features of 89 systems. This English summary contains only that part of the report and our aim is not to update this list later.

The following list is definitely not complete. We have collected those programs that we knew of. The descriptions of programs are made by reading brochures, research articles and bibliographies of SGML products. Some of the information has been received from companies or importers (into Finland) of products or from users of these programs. The source material is mentioned in the description of every program. We have also tested as many programs as possible.

When we collected material it was difficult to decide which systems we should consider in the report. A first obvious distinction would be between SGML and non-SGML systems. Because this criterion would ignore many interesting systems and prototypes we decided to deal with all kinds of systems for structured documents although these are not able to input and/or output SGML documents. After this, our next question was what is to consider a "program for the structured text". As the users of WWW notice our list does not contain HTML editors or browsers. Our criterion has been that the program must be able to accept structure definitions made by the user. However, there is an exception to this rule: we have accepted conversion programs that change documents from one format to another. The reason for this decision was that many users are interested to know if they are able to change their own documents made by some text processing system into SGML documents, or back into a document accepted by their text processing system.

We have not subdivided the systems into any groups according to their types or categories because any kind of a classification is always arbitrary. Many programs could belong to many categories; their classification is almost impossible. Thus, we have listed the systems in alphabetical order. The description of every program mentions, however, one or more of those types that we have used to give an idea about the use of the system. We have used the following types. For every type an explanation will provide the meaning that we have given to it. The representations of programs contain following features in addition of a short description. Only relevant and available features are mentioned for a single program.