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Re: those predeclared entity refs



> The number of people who are familiar with *anything* now is
> insignificant compared to the number of people who will be working
> with these languages five years from now.

If current trends continue, the majority of them will be English speakers,
though not necessarily native English speakers. That isn't an argument
for language bigotry, but for suggesting that it *may* still be more intuitive
to most page authors five years from now than (seemingly random) numbers.

Anyhow, five years from now is a LONG TIME. What do we know about five years
from now: do they still edit XML text by hand? Do they still use a few,
standard DTDs, written in English? Do people write their own DTDs in their own
languages but continue to use the < and > conventions because they are
so universal? Did Unicode actually take off? Are programmers the only people
who see "raw" XML code?

> Apples and oranges.  "<!ELEMENT" occurs n times per DTD; &amp; occurs
> m times per instance.  Remember that XML is designed primarily for
> delivery; the typical delivery scenario is one in which there is no
> DTD at all.

Okay then, what do

<?XML ?> "version" CDATA DOCTYPE RMD

mean if I'm not an English speaker? Why are these funny double-tick
mark ("") characters special? How do I know that they start and end a string?

Once again, I'm not advocating that anyone be forced to use &lt;, but that it
be made easy for the majority of us now, and potentially in 5 years, who are
either familiar with the convention or are English speakers (native or not).

 Paul Prescod


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