Does it really matter where the code runs? Or does it just matter who writes it?
In most examples, HTML runs on client machines which may be roughly comparable to your example, but who cares, because the code (whether measured in lines or nodes) the author had to write to generate that HTML was presumably superior in some way compared to writing HTML manually. (Otherwise why not just code straight HTML, all the time?)
In your example, even though the server side code consisted of 0 lines/nodes, the code written by you consisted on an entire HTML page. So did you really save any time or effort in writing the HTML? Maybe, that's why we compare the code trees. But even in that case, the HTML itself will count toward the code tree.
Perhaps this means that HTML templates (not HTML generated by server-side scripts) used in other entries should also be included in their code tree count, if they had to be coded manually by the author. But even if this is the case, it doesn't just add a constant factor to all entries (I believe the arc entry did not require any HTML to be written by the author), and thus is still useful information, although perhaps the two should be considered separately.
P.S. Really liked your submission. I just don't think it counts as 0 lines of code.
Thanks, eds. I think that's a pretty fair judgment, and you're right that it wouldn't be a constant factor because different people are generating different amounts of HTML in the end. My example only has one page, and though it should be valid HTML4, I do include some CSS and div's that other folks wouldn't need. Admittedly, to keep theirs valid, they'd also need a lot more html, head, title, and body tags than me if they're making multiple pages.
The thing that strikes me as being kind of a funny metric here with code length is that if the author wrote the HTML and imported it into their code, you have to count it, but if some other author wrote the HTML and you import it, then you don't have to count it. Seems kind of weird to me, seeing as this opens the door to somebody else saying:
Alright, maybe gjohnson's code count includes all that silly HTML and CSS, but my program uses his HTML template file (which isn't much of a template in this case, of course, being kind of the whole shebang), and has a parse tree of length 1.
Here it is:
<!--#include virtual="gjohnsons_magic.html" -->
Tada! I mean, heck. It's true that pg didn't write the HTML in his arc challenge submission code, but wait a minute! He did write it in his function library when he was defining the language. So being the author of the original HTML, does he have to include it after all?
You're right. That was one of the main objection against this challenge, from what I read on many forums. Well, the really convincing test is to use Arc for real. I wrote a small webapp with Arc and I never wrote such an app so fast. Quite amazing for a language I didn't know.
Point taken. This stuff about parse trees and who-wrote-what is after all just an academic argument. You're absolutely right that it's what we can write and how he enables us to write it in the end that makes this stuff all so interesting.
Anyway, keep going everyone. Those submissions are rockin' on. I've got my mind wrapped around a pretty perversely heinous challenge response that I may get to in the next couple of days. Keep your eyes peeled!
P.S. Did anybody notice that those class="page" attributes are unnecessary in my HTML/CSS code above? Just checking. Looks like I forgot to remove'em before posting.