> Ascii art also has the advantage of being compact so that those of use with
> limited Internet access can still get our files fast - bear in mind this
> thing is gonna be the best part of 200 pages long if its all done throughly.
> If we agree that the text editor is the lowest common denominator - notepad -
> then this saves lots of messing around with fonts etc.  Which really would
> screw up ascii art.

I'd suggest just leaving any "art" out rather than wasting bandwidth
with ASCII hacking.  It seems er, interesting, that in 1999 some
seem to still worry about how fast someone with a 300 baud modem can
download.  At some point in time it's time to say "upgrade, be
inconvenienced or do without!"  I'm saying this as someone who is
stuck with a phone line that will support all of 24k connect on a
really good day.

I don't like HTML for the simple reason that it makes it more
trouble to get everything and then get it to work on the local PC. 
Acrobat/PDF is the modern universal interchange format.  For
no-hassle operation, Adobe has a nice free reader and a fairly
inexpensive encoder.  For the free brigade there is GhostScript,
etc.  The PDF format preserved ALL formatting details.  Even more
useful for a document that is intended to have wide distribution and
is therefore subject to alteration by others is the built-in
security.  One can set a flag when the PDF is created and prevent
the editing of the file while still allowing the user to view, print
or cut and paste materials.  Sure, the security isn't airtight (just
to head off wasted bandwidth on that topic) but it deters the casual
editors from changing the document and then redistributing it.

If the only excuse for not using PDF is that Acrobat costs real,
actual money (gasp!), then I'll volunteer to typeset and encode the
documents here.  I have just about everything Adobe makes.


John De Armond
Neon John's Custom Neon
Cleveland, TN
"Bendin' Glass 'n Passin' Gas"