Re: Psychology and usefulness

Mike Batchelor (
Mon, 17 Jul 1995 11:08:52 -0400 (EDT)

From: Mike Batchelor <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Re: Psychology and usefulness
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 1995 11:08:52 -0400 (EDT)
In-Reply-To: <> from "Ka-Ping Yee" at Jul 17, 95 00:34:23 am

Ka-Ping Yee once wrote...
> In article <>,
> Alan J Flavell <> wrote:
> >
> >I'm going to admit that when I'm marking up pages in a hurry, I
> >do tend to use <b> and <i> when I really mean em or strong.  But I
> >don't extol that as a virtue - I know it's poor style.
> You know, there's some very unfortunate human psychology happening
> here.  When HTML was designed, why did they have to make <b> and
> <i> so much SHORTER than <em> and <strong> ?  Everyone shrinks away
> a little from typing six times as much everywhere they want emphasis...
> And so people take the easiest way out.  (I declare myself guilty
> on some occasions as well.)  But i do hope that these kinds of issues
> will no longer be ignored.  Sure, we want a good content-based standard,
> but it doesn't hurt to have one that people tend to use because it has
> more apparent convenience.

I don't know if SGML supports the concept, but couldn't certain throwback
tags like <i> and <b> be interpreted in the new standard as aliases for
<em> and <strong>, with the goal of deprecating them in a future standard?

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