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Re: [XHTML2] Unicode line and paragraph separators

From: Ernest Cline <ernestcline@mindspring.com>
Date: Sun, 06 Apr 2003 12:13:09 -0400
To: www-html@w3.org
Message-ID: <3E9019D5.475.2941849@localhost>

On 5 Apr 2003 at 20:31, fantasai wrote:

> Ernest Cline wrote:
> >
> > And why does (X)HTML need to know whether something is inside of a 
> > paragraph or not? 
> 
> Because the whole *point* of using markup is to know the structure of
> the document. Since paragraph is the most basic structural unit of prose
> composition, XHTML needs to know whether something is inside a paragraph.

Actually, the sentence is the most basic structural unit of prose 
composition, and it has no markup associated with it. What is there 
about paragraphs in general that makes it important to be marked up, 
while the sentence is not? In HTML, it was because there was no other 
way to denote a paragraph. With the paragraph separator character now 
available in the default character set, Unicode, that is not the case.


>  > The main use of <p> in current (X)HTML practice is to apply styling to
>  > paragraphs. As that is purely a presentational issue,
> 
> The main use of <p> is to denote a paragraph. The main purpose of
> applying styling is to make that designation obvious to the reader.
> Whether the paragraph is indented on the first line or given a
> margin of 1em is a purely presentational issue. Whether a given
> block of text constitutes a paragraph is a structural one.

And that structure can be communicated by the use of the paragraph 
separator.  For reasons that I have given before, the paragraph 
separator can do so more efficiently IF the other results of using 

> > I repeat my earlier query: Is there somewhere a representative set of 
> > current (X)HTML pages that could be used to make such a determination 
> > of how often the <p> element is used for reasons in addition to 
> > breaking text up into paragraphs?
> 
> Go to http://www.google.com and type in something random.

All that would do is give me a list of pages that use my "random" 
subject and would not necessarily be representative of (X)HTML pages in 
general.  Nevertheless, since I haven't heard anything better, I shall 
try that. and report back on the results along with a description of 
the methodology I use.
Received on Sunday, 6 April 2003 12:12:52 GMT

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