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Re: 'acronym' semantics

From: John Lewis <lewi0371@mrs.umn.edu>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 2003 23:22:41 -0500
Message-ID: <116112476308.20030412232241@cda.mrs.umn.edu>
To: www-html@w3.org

Christian wrote on Saturday, April 12, 2003 at 5:18:37 PM:

> Am Freitag, 11. April 2003 08:20 schrieb John Lewis:
>> Christian wrote on Thursday, April 10, 2003 at 9:06:49 AM:
>>> Is XML an acronym or not? At least it is a name of a language.
>>> Some say it is (I'd also say that), and some say it isn't.
>> That's (mostly) irrelevant to XHTML2. It's an issue authors should
>> deal with as they wish. If you think XML is an acronym, mark it up
>> as such. If not, don't. Who is right doesn't matter for the
>> language itself; that's an issue for authors.

> No. It's completely irrelevant to XHTML2. <acronym/> has been
> dropped. There's only <abbr/>, and I think it's good that they
> dropped <acronym/>.

Whether or not XML is an acronym is an authoring issue, not a language
issue, unless the language defines some way of differentiating between
abbreviations (unless it avoids defining the differences). An element
is but one way of accomplishing that, and one badly suited to XHTML2.
There are still people hoping for an alternative method that brings
with it the same advantages and doesn't have the drawbacks.

You and I can't know if it's "completely irrelevant" because XHTML2 is
a working draft, and as such is unstable.


I've never been very good at predicting the future.

> One could use the class Attribute to denote what kind(s) of
> abbreviation it is.

I know, that's precisely what I said in the message I sent a few
minutes before the one you replied to. Did you miss it?


My only gripe is that UAs can't possibly have default styling for the
various types unless XHTML2 reserves values for them, which is

John Lewis
Received on Sunday, 13 April 2003 00:24:16 UTC

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