W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > wai-xtech@w3.org > April 2008

Re: homogenized XML Entity Names and AT

From: David Carlisle <davidc@nag.co.uk>
Date: Wed, 9 Apr 2008 19:09:05 +0100
Message-Id: <200804091809.m39I95cT030055@quetzal.nag.co.uk>
To: oedipus@hicom.net
CC: wai-xtech@w3.org

> if the creation of a homogeneous set of XML entity names 
> across vocabularies has ramifications for assistive technologies...

If the applications are using an XML parser (or html parser as the case
may be) then the use or not of entity references should be completely
transparent. Entity references are an authoring convention and an
application isn't supposed to treat a reference to a character any
differently to the referenced character, and an xml parser will
(typically) replace the entity reference by the character before an
application accesses the data.

> does an AT need to be able to identify &#34; as a quote,
Numeric references are not entity references and not affected by the
xml-entity-names-draft, they always9in xml and html4 or 5)  refer to
Unicode code points, so the  same comments apply to numeric references
as character references, they should be replaced by the parser before
the application sees the data &#34; and " are the same thing in element

> is it merely a case of ATs needing to fully support unicode, or at least
> the discrete set outlined in:
>    http://www.w3.org/TR/xml-entity-names/

they need to do that in any case, whatever the choice of the mapping of
the entity name phi to U+03D5 or U+03C6, the author has the choice (and
is encouraged) to use the character directly, so the application needs
to be able to accept these characters, not just the name "phi".

Of course Unicode has a lot of characters and any system will support
some better than others. I reference those blocks in the working draft
to give a rough idea of which characters are most likely to appear as
symbols in scientific documents, but a more canonical source of that
information is Unicode report 25


Received on Wednesday, 9 April 2008 18:10:54 UTC

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