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Re: an XHTML dialect for specs?

From: Dan Connolly <connolly@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 13 Dec 1999 15:08:37 -0600
Message-ID: <38556055.59120CB0@w3.org>
To: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>
CC: spec-prod@w3.org
Tim Bray wrote:
> 
> At 02:38 PM 12/13/99 -0600, Dan Connolly wrote:
> >The idea is to use on XHTML dialect for editing *and* delivery.
> 
> Hmm, the current XML dialect has all sorts of semantic markup for
> stuff like BNF and conformance constraints and so on.  Switching to
> XHTML for HTML-like stuff (ordered lists, paragraphs) seems obvious;
> but I'm not sure how you avoid that batch processing step if you want
> to use fancy div/span or table machinery to make BNF look good and
> so on.  -Tim

First, I'd rather use CSS2 table style stuff than HTML <table> markup
to decorate BNFs and such (someday, at least...)

Second...
I'm not necessarily trying to avoid the batch processing step
altogether.
The idea is that
	-- without the batch process, you can still use a web browser
	to get a rough idea of your document
and
	-- after you run the batch process, you don't throw away the results,
	but rather fold them back into the source.


So I'd probably do something like:

	<s:grammar><dl>
	<dt>lhs <s:c>::=</s:c></dt>
	<dd>rhs...<s:constraintRef>
		<a href="#const-no-pickles"><s:c>CONSTRAINT:</s:c> no pickles</a>
		</s:constraintRef></dd>
	</dl>
	</grammar>

	<s:constraint><h3><a name="const-no-pickles">No Pickles</a></h3>
	<p>Pickles are not allowed at this point in the sandwich due
	to the risk of allergic reaction.</p>
	</s:constraint>

for grammars with constraints.

And with the right tools, the <s:c> stuff would be added by machine
from source that looked like:

	<s:grammar><dl>
	<dt>lhs</dt>
	<dd>rhs...<s:constraintRef>
		<a href="#const-no-pickles">no pickles</a>
		</s:constraintRef></dd>
	</dl>
	</grammar>

	<s:constraint><h3><a name="const-no-pickles">No Pickles</a></h3>
	<p>Pickles are not allowed at this point in the sandwich due
	to the risk of allergic reaction.</p>
	</s:constraint>

-- 
Dan Connolly
http://www.w3.org/People/Connolly/
Received on Monday, 13 December 1999 16:09:16 GMT

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