Many of you will probably have heard me rail against the tendency of people to choose technologies which are complex and ugly without actually being powerful. Clearly if one is lucky one doesn't have to use them, but some are so ugly that their very existence causes irk.
And so, I bring you MHEG5 - the text system used on Freeview and various other things round the world. MHEG stands, bizarrely, for Multimedia and Hypermedia Expert Group. What sort of Multimedia and Hypermedia experts were they I wonder? It looks as if they had heard about programming languages and mark-up languages but had never seen any and didn't quite understand the concept.
The hello world program referenced from the Wikipedia page is particularly fine http://www.digvid.info/mheg5/hello_world.php
And see this for a more 'complex' example. I say complex - just look at how much 'code' (for want of a better word) there is http://www.cs.cf.ac.uk/Dave/Multimedia/node311.html
Now, does this matter? Well, clearly not very much, except that on some level it might be nice to believe in the European model of committees and working parties and so on...