Re: ISO and HTML

Ingo Macherius (Ingo.Macherius@tu-clausthal.de)
Mon, 7 Apr 1997 01:28:45 +0200 (MET DST)


Message-Id: <199704062328.BAA01483@kneipfix.rz.tu-clausthal.de>
Subject: Re: ISO and HTML
To: Drazen.Kacar@public.srce.hr (Drazen Kacar)
Date: Mon, 7 Apr 1997 01:28:45 +0200 (MET DST)
Cc: www-html@w3.org
In-Reply-To: <199704062243.AAA22505@jagor.srce.hr> from "Drazen Kacar" at Apr 7, 97 00:43:33 am
From: Ingo Macherius <Ingo.Macherius@tu-clausthal.de>

Drazen Kacar said:

| Ingo Macherius wrote:
| 
| > My feeling about markup languages is: If something could be done as
| > attribute or tag, do it as tag.
| 
| So, we could have tag SMALL that is specifically invented for the purpose
| of changing font properties. Or we could have SIZE attribute in almost
| all other tags. Suppose I need to make a table with somewhat smaller
| font. With SMALL (new tag) approach, I need to open and close SMALL in
| every TD. With SIZE in TABLE tag, I need only write <TABLE SIZE="-1">.

MENU and DIR, as either attribute or tag, state the semantic meaning
of element content. The SMALL/SIZE tag/attribute gives a hint for
visual browsers on font selection for display.
Following the logic of making semantic markup the attribute of a more
or less generic container element you consequently end up saying
<div class="h1>, <div class="html">, <div class="title"> etc. This is
clearly not the way SGML languages work.

Attributes giving hints on the physical appearence of the element content
(which are a pest, but this is another story) should clearly be global to
all tags. Please note that I spoke of unique attributes. An attribute like
ID, which is shared by several tags, increases the count by only 1. The 
high Cougar attribute count results from the many attributes that are just
used by one/few tags. Another increasing factor is, that in e.g. <IMG SRC=...>
and <A HREF=...> two attributes have the same function, but not spelling.

So (new version ;)
My feeling about markup languages is: If something *concerning user data
semantics* could be done as attribute or tag, do it as tag.

	++im
-- 
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