World Wide Web Consortium Issues First Public Draft of Document Object Model (DOM)

Industry Leaders Collaborate to Develop Core Functionality for Document Navigation and Content Manipulation

For immediate release
Contact America ---

The Weber Group

Anne Potts <>
Eric Snow <>

+1 617 661-7900
+1 617 661-0024 (fax)

Contact Europe --

Andrew Lloyd & Associates

Ned Mitchell <>
+33 1 43 22 79 56

Andrew Lloyd <>
+44 127 367 5100

CAMBRIDGE, MASS., USA -- October 9, 1997 -- The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) today issued the first Working Draft of its Document Object Model (DOM) specification, Core Level 1, addressing core functionality for document navigation and content manipulation. "The collaboration on DOM reinforces the strength of the W3C process", said Arnaud Le Hors, W3C DOM Activity Leader. "The W3C DOM Working Group is developing a platform- and language-neutral program interface that will allow programs and scripts to access every element in a document and update the content and structure of documents in a standard way."

Key industry players are participating in the DOM Working Group, including ArborText, Grif, IBM, Inso, Microsoft, Netscape, Novell, the Object Management Group, SoftQuad and Sun Microsystems.

"The Document Object Model could be the most significant interoperability standard to ever come out of the W3C," said Gavin Nicol, Systems Architect at Inso Corporation and contributor to the DOM working group. "The DOM API will 'level the playing field' for vendors developing document manipulation applications. With DOM, Web authors, script writers, and application developers will be able to write programs once and have them run equally well in all DOM-compliant implementations. In addition to supporting important emerging standards such as XML, XSL, and XLL, Inso is committed to supporting DOM in future versions of products such as DynaText and DynaBase."

"DOM Level 1 provides the framework for truly dynamic documents on the Web. We are pleased to contribute to this work," said David Singer, Senior Technical Staff Member, IBM.

Interoperability = Author Empowerment

Current software implementations which allow dynamic access and updates of content, structure and style lack a standard interface -- resulting in authors' inability to use the programs in an interoperable manner. The W3C is tackling this problem with DOM; its foundation being Level 1.

"This first draft of Level 1 goes a long way toward promoting the interoperability of the Web," said Lauren Wood, DOM Working Group Chair and Technical Project Manager of SoftQuad, Inc. "It provides a general framework to which we will be adding in the specifications to come, and is flexible enough to be used for many different applications and by many different people."

"The DOM Working Draft lays the groundwork for interoperability," said David Cole, vice president of the Internet client and collaboration division at Microsoft. "Microsoft is committed to continuing its leading support of the W3C DOM in Microsoft Internet Explorer."

"Netscape believes this first working draft represents a significant advancement that will provide developers with a standard way to create dynamic content," said Dave Rothschild, director of client product marketing at Netscape. "A standard implementation of the DOM--in conjunction with Java and JavaScript--will allow developers to produce platform-independent application interfaces that lay the foundation for a next-generation of crossware applications."

"The possibilities offered by Document Object Model API are practically unlimited, and essential to the efficient diffusion and processing of information throughout any organization. Grif intends to incorporate the DOM API into its existing Global Application Toolkit Environment to enable the same kinds of enriched document creation and management applications on intranets that are used today in our customers' industrial-strength publishing systems." said Murray Maloney, Technical Marketing Director, Grif S.A.

Tim Bray, invited expert on the DOM Interest Group and co-editor of the W3C XML specification, said "This DOM draft is a great beginning. It includes everything you need for serious client-side XML processing, starting now. With the DOM, Java, ECMAscript, and XML, the pieces are finally falling into place so we can bring the Web alive."

"ArborText is continually seeking ways for our customers to improve their levels of reuse, and supporting DOM will enable them to reuse the same code for both content creation and content delivery," said Paul Grosso, ArborText's VP of Research and Advisory Committee representative to W3C.

"Script authors will probably use more of the functions in the HTML and XML specifications, which the DOM Working Group is currently designing," continued Wood. "We plan to have more to say on that front soon."

The Core Level 1 DOM Working Draft is expected to be followed by HTML and XML Level 1 specifications in the near term. After the release of these specifications, the Working Group will work on formulating other Levels of the DOM that specify a standard event model, style sheet model and a more sophisticated security model.

For more information on DOM, please see

About the World Wide Web Consortium [W3C]

The W3C was created to develop common protocols that enhance the interoperability and promote the evolution of the World Wide Web. It is an industry consortium jointly run by the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science (LCS) in the USA, the National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control (INRIA) in France and Keio University in Japan. Services provided by the Consortium include: a repository of information about the World Wide Web for developers and users; reference code implementations to embody and promote standards; and various prototype and sample applications to demonstrate use of new technology. To date, over 210 organizations are Members of the Consortium.

For more information about the World Wide Web Consortium, see

About the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science

Now in its third decade, MIT LCS is dedicated to the invention, development and understanding of information technologies expected to drive substantial technical and socio-economic change. The LCS has helped information technology grow from a mere curiosity to 10 percent of the industrial world's economies by its pioneering efforts in interactive computing, computer networking, distributed systems and public key cryptography. LCS members and alumni have started some thirty companies and have pioneered the Nubus, the X-Window System, the RSA algorithm, the Ethernet and spreadsheets.

For more information about the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science, see


INRIA, the French National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control, is a public-sector scientific institute charged with conducting both fundamental and applied research, and with transferring research results to industry. INRIA is made up of five Research Units located at Rocquencourt (near Paris), Rennes, Sophia Antipolis, Nancy and Grenoble. Areas of current research include information processing, advanced high speed networking, structured documents, and scientific computation.

For more information about INRIA, see

About Keio University

Keio University is one of Japan's foremost computer science research centers and universities. It is one of the oldest private universities in Japan, andhas five major campuses around Tokyo. Keio University has been promoting joint research projects in cooperation with industry, government and international organizations, and is now becoming one of the research leaders for the network and digital media technology.

For more information on Keio University, see

$Date: 1997/10/08 22:08:25 $