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RE: Problem with LANG keyword

From: Reuven Nisser <rnisser@ofek-liyladenu.org.il>
Date: Wed, 24 Sep 2003 01:12:34 +0300
To: "BIGELOW,JIM (HP-Boise,ex1)" <jim.bigelow@hp.com>, Christoph Päper <christoph.paeper@tu-clausthal.de>
Cc: <www-html@w3.org>, "'shaula haitner'" <shaula@shaula.co.il>, "'Yuval Rabinovich'" <yuval@faz.co.il>, "'Gertel Hasson'" <gilagh@netvision.net.il>
Message-ID: <EOEHIKCGOKGNIEEKJHEKOEJIDGAA.rnisser@ofek-liyladenu.org.il>

I just found something that could help me here and I would like to hear your

As you can understand, what I want to achieve is to have a way to mark a
text as Hebrew, Arabic and English. I'm saying that there are times that the
distinction between the three languages is obvious from the text and this is

Till now, I thought that in order to achieve it, I will need to ask for a
change in the HTML standard to support multiple values in the LANG
attribute. However, I found in
http://www.w3.org/TR/REC-html40/struct/dirlang.html#langcodes, paragraph
8.1.2 the following description:

8.1.2 Inheritance of language codes
An element inherits language code information according to the following
order of precedence (highest to lowest):

1. The lang attribute set for the element itself.
2. The closest parent element that has the lang attribute set (i.e., the
lang attribute is inherited).
3. The HTTP "Content-Language" header (which may be configured in a server).
For example:
Content-Language: en-cockney
4. User agent default values and user preferences.

So, adding in the header:
<META http-equiv="Content-Language" CONTENT="he,ar,en-US">

without using the LANG attribute unless I want to change the default will
solve my problem.

However, not all the things are clear. I still have the following problems:
1. What is the language of "3"? Should it be spoken in Hebrew or English?
The answer might be in Hebrew because Hebrew appeared first in the list of
2. What is the language of "I have 3 brothers". Should the 3 be said in
Hebrew or English? According to the previous rule it should be spoken in
Hebrew but it's inside an English sentence so it makes more sense to say it
in English.

I think that these open questions could be resolved when necessary by a
speech synthesizer future developer.

What do you think about my solution?
Thank you,
Reuven Nisser
Ofek Liyladenu
Received on Tuesday, 23 September 2003 18:12:46 UTC

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