W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > December 2012

Re: The missing Sentence tag

From: Lee Kowalkowski <lee.kowalkowski@googlemail.com>
Date: Thu, 6 Dec 2012 10:31:49 +0000
Message-ID: <CAGpS7GM3aCPHU96Ro_5ymeFPc40nf17jD-_uc6EftubcN1ep+Q@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Thomas A. Fine" <fine@head.cfa.harvard.edu>
Cc: public-html <public-html@w3.org>
On 5 December 2012 21:20, Thomas A. Fine <fine@head.cfa.harvard.edu> wrote:

> On 12/5/12 2:11 PM, Jirka Kosek wrote:
>>
>>
>> This seems as a quite bold statement given the fact that most authors of
>> Web content will be too lazy to markup sentences.
>>
>
> I'll admit that this is likely true to some degree.  Unfortunately it's
> also a self-fulfilling prophecy: if we don't offer tools for marking up
> sentences, then we have effectively prevented anyone but the most dedicated
> and steadfast from attempting some sort of substitute.  At present, the
> most common recommendation to the people who are interested in sentence
> formatting are told to use the broken solution of adding a non-breaking
> space.  Even if a less broken solution of some other space like the em or
> en space entity was offered, we're still telling people to do their
> formatting with stone knives and bearskins, when in all other avenues we
> strongly encourage people to turn to CSS for their formatting needs.
>
> And people interested in semantic tags have nothing at all.
>

Being interested in semantics doesn't always mean tags.  There would be
nothing wrong with using a HTML entity that represented sentence spacing,
except there'd need to be a character in the character set specifically for
it.

What's the proposed tag name, <sentence>?  You won't get many authors
marking up their sentences using that, even if they don't like the default
sentence spacing, it's just too much effort. This would require authors
that maintain their content in a markdown format to have some natural
language processing applied to achieve this, but would be
annoying/uncontrollable if it inserted sentence tags where they shouldn't
be.

I didn't like the default sentence spacing until I read
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sentence_spacing, now I just don't care, even
though I habitually use two spaces after a sentence when I type, force of
habit, that's what I was told to do at school, but apparently, I shouldn't:
http://www.penmachine.com/2011/01/stop-typing-2-spaces-after-period.  There
are many articles like this, that say since proportional fonts, there's
never been any need to care about using a different sentence spacing than
normal word spacing.  I really need to stop typing that way!  I might
actually have something for a New Year's resolution for once.

--
Lee
www.webdeavour.co.uk
Received on Thursday, 6 December 2012 10:32:29 UTC

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