W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > April 1998

Re: Future of HTML

From: Rob <wlkngowl@unix.asb.com>
Date: Mon, 6 Apr 1998 00:52:16 -0500
Message-Id: <199804060454.AAA16501@unix.asb.com>
To: david_richmond@nl.compuware.com
CC: www-html@w3.org
On 26 Mar 98, Gerald Oskoboiny or David Richmond (?) wrote:

>      Data-Type Formatting
>      --------------------
>      I would like to see a formal HTML way of formatting data-type values, 
>      such as dates and numbers. The raw value would be specified using USA 
>      conventions, but can be reformatted to the user agent's conventions. 
>      For example, an american date of 3/26/98 would be shown in a European 
>      user agent as 26/3/98 or even as 26 March 1998.

Why not ISO YYYY-MM-DD dates?

>      As for the best way of doing this I am not sure, but adding a 
>      <DATATYPE> tag would be one way. The attributes of the tag would allow 
>      refined formatting to be defined, for example:
>      The markup
>         <DATATYPE type=date format=full>3/26/98</DATATYPE>
>         <DATATYPE type=date format=short>3/26/98</DATATYPE>
>         <DATATYPE type=number>1000.00</DATATYPE>
>         <DATATYPE type=currency unit=USD>1000.00</DATATYPE>

That's complex. The UA needs to know what the format is inside the 
markup, and then how to convert to the format preferred by the user. It 
would be bizarre writing a page in English and having dates show up in 
Dutch too (and there's an XML proposal--URL not handy at the moment-- for 
translating common phrases that's worth looking at).

Using currency units is more complex. How are they going to be converted? 
If I'm talking about USD, then the "$" is appropriate... showing a 
Deutchmark followed by "1000,00" would make no sense. And one certainly 
can't be proposing that the UA convert between currencies (which of 
course is time-dependent anyway).

>      CSS Aliases
>      -----------
>      This suggestion applies to those of us who write CSS by hand, as 
>      opposed to via CSS editors. It would be useful to be able to define an 
>      alias which can be used throughout the style-sheet, removing the need 
>      to duplicate definitions. This could be done via a @alias definition, 
>      for example:
>         @alias MyClr { #FF00FF }

A very useful feature, even for non-handrolled CSS. Problem: older 
browsers that don't recognize it.

Received on Monday, 6 April 1998 00:53:54 UTC

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