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Re: [XHTML2] Unicode line and paragraph separators

From: Ernest Cline <ernestcline@mindspring.com>
Date: Fri, 04 Apr 2003 11:38:35 -0500
To: www-html@w3.org, www-html-editor@w3.org
Message-ID: <3E8D6EBB.14351.43F9510@localhost>

On 4 Apr 2003 at 7:29, Toby wrote:

> On Fri, Apr 04, 2003 at 12:52:14AM -0500, Ernest Cline wrote:
> | If there 
> | were no earlier (X)HTML standards, I think that separator model would 
> | be clearly the superior. If XHTML2 was not already engaged in the 
> | pruning of existing (X)HTML elements, then markup elements would 
> | clearly be the preferred choice. However, the earlier standards do 
> | exist and XHTML2 is pruning a significant number of (X)HTML elements, 
> | meaning that the choice must be made on another basis.
> An argument against it is this. Your &ls; entity would be effectively 
> and semantically the same as <br/> which is one of the elements we're 
> actively tring to get rid of!

No, &ls; would not be the same as <br/>. There are several important 
differences.  As an entity, the only thing that &ls; could do would be 
to indicate a new line.  On the other hand <br/> is an element. As 
such, <br/> has a separate node in the DOM tree which takes up much 
more memory than the single 16-bit character that &ls; would use.  
Further, <br/> can have arbitrary styling or scripting applied to it 
that can have strange effects not normally associated with going to a 
new line. As an entity &ls; would be much more efficient than <br/>. 
Whether or not &ls; would be more efficient than <l></l> would depend 
upon how often authors need to use something like <span>Line 
1</span>&ls;<span>Line 2</span> because of a need to treat each line as 
an element for stylistic or scripting purposes.

As for "bad" pages that use <br/> instead of appropriate semantic 
markup, all that will happen if the <l></l> markup is used in XHTML2 is 
that authors (and authoring agents) that now use <br/> instead of 
semantic markup will use <l></l> instead of semantic markup. You can 
lead a monkey to a typewriter, but you can't make him write  
Received on Friday, 4 April 2003 11:38:39 UTC

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