Originally Posted by exaltedwombat
It's certainly POSSIBLE. Any decent website editor does it, and an epub is only a limited-function set of web pages!
Imagine passing a website's code through three or four different web-editors, then opening the code-view and trying to parse what the heck everything was.
Never work. It's always a complex of spaghetti-code and overlaid styles. It's like what you get out of Calibre after a conversion.
It works, visually. That's it. Not readily parseable for elements, because it doesn't care. It's just trying to do something visual.
The point of proper editing of a book is to generate good classes and elements, divorcing style from content; the only way to do that is to get smart about minimizing what you use. If you allow it to be open-ended, you break easily Word-processing a book into shape, because the necessarily-limited set of elements and styling is exceeded and the app cannot cope -- it is impossible, short of machine-sentience for it to know what you intended.
Making an editor that displays what the code does, sure; that's self-evident. Making an editor that meets the needs of the ignorant and the wise is impossible -- all you'll ever get is kludges.
Now I'm up to $0.04.