W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-i18n-geo@w3.org > July 2005

Re: New FAQ: entities and NCRs

From: Bjoern Hoehrmann <derhoermi@gmx.net>
Date: Fri, 01 Jul 2005 21:21:01 +0200
To: "Richard Ishida" <ishida@w3.org>
Cc: "GEO" <public-i18n-geo@w3.org>
Message-ID: <42dd94d3.284096125@smtp.bjoern.hoehrmann.de>

* Richard Ishida wrote:

I think the document should note that using "character entities" is not
interoperable and possibly dangerous. The HTML Working Group has been
approached several times to clarify whether and how implementations are
supposed to support the pre-defined entities if they do not read the
external subset; the HTML Working Group so far refused to provide such
clarification, so there are a number of old implementations that do not
support use of them in XHTML documents at all (to the extend that some
implementations incorrectly reject documents that use them) and current
implementations that support them for some document types but not for

Also note that per XML 1.0 Third Edition,

  It is [A violation of the rules of this specification] if an attribute
  value contains a reference to an entity for which no declaration has
  been read. [Conforming software MAY detect and report an error and MAY
  recover from [this error]].

So to the extend that it is possible to have some kind of XHTML document
that uses "character entities" in attributes but the user agent does not
support the document type and/or did not process the entity declaration,
it is perfectly permissable for the user agent to act in unexpected ways
for the document. Robust documents do not use "character entities" at
all unless they are pre-defined in XML 1.0 or declared in the internal

The document should also link to the relevant requirements in Charmod
Björn Höhrmann · mailto:bjoern@hoehrmann.de · http://bjoern.hoehrmann.de
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Received on Friday, 1 July 2005 19:21:12 UTC

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