Re: Comments on HTMl 4 draft (9/Nov/1997)

Jukka Korpela (
Fri, 19 Dec 1997 11:32:00 +0200 (EET)

Date: Fri, 19 Dec 1997 11:32:00 +0200 (EET)
From: Jukka Korpela <>
In-Reply-To: <>
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Re: Comments on HTMl 4 draft (9/Nov/1997)

On Thu, 18 Dec 1997, Sue Jordan wrote:

> Taking the liberty of combining your sentences results in a
> paradox for me: " Using italics is definitely the
> _preferable_ presentation... [sic. although]...not
> _essentially_ presentational but structural."  I just don't
> seem able to discern the difference between preferably
> presentational and essentially presentational, even given
> the taxonomic example. 

Oh, it's actually quite simple. Since it's a well-established habit
in printed publications, taxonomic names should be presented in
italics if possible, with underlining as the second option. But of
course there is nothing inherently presentational in being
a scientific taxonomic name.

> Having just re-read RFC 2070, I don't understand why use of
> the LANG attribute would not be a better answer for your
> second example than keeping or adding presentational
> elements.  

I was definitely not suggesting the addition of _presentational_
elements. I suggested keeping <I>, for presentational purposes,
until we have a structural element. Naturally, using <I> just
keeps things as they are, which is unsatisfactory; deprecating it
without an alternative which would _at least_ handle the presentational
side as reliably as <I> does doesn't look like an improvement.

The LANG attribute does _not_ solve this problem. If I write
"the plural of 'ox' is 'oxen'", I would do it under in the scope
of LANG="en" or something like that. Using '<SPAN LANG="en">ox</SPAN>'
would do no good, of course. I don't want to give the redundant
information 'this is something in English' but the information
'these words are used here as objects of a language, to be preserved
as such in any translation'.