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Re: Correct usage of the q element

From: L. David Baron <dbaron@dbaron.org>
Date: Sat, 14 Feb 2004 20:25:43 -0800
To: www-html@w3.org
Message-ID: <20040215042543.GA30087@darby.dbaron.org>

On Saturday 2004-02-14 22:43 -0500, Karl Dubost wrote:
> Le 14 févr. 2004, à 18:30, L. David Baron a écrit :
> >Anyway, I think putting the burden of choosing correct quotation marks
> >on the user agent is a bad idea.  Different languages have different
> 
> :) which hits one of my issue, each time we talk about XHTML/HTML, we 
> talk about User agents (browsers) and not Authoring tools.

However, we should optimize for the case where a page is viewed many
more times than it is written.  Faced with a choice of something that
would slow down an authoring tool or something that would slow down a
browser, I'd say it's better to slow down the authoring tool.

> Usage scenario:
> 
> 	I'm browsing the Web, read an english Web site with a cool quote. I 
> copy it and paste it in my authoring tool.
> 	1. If the quotes are hard-coded, it means the burden is on the user 
> 	to know how to modify for example from “...” to « ... » in a french 
> context.
> 	2. If the quotes are not hard-coded (use of q), the quotes will 
> automatically be adjusted depending on the context.

Having the quotes in the document does not prevent an authoring tool
from adjusting them, especially if appropriate markup is present (e.g.,
XHTML2 quote [1]).

> I could agree with you, if at least the CSS property was correctly 
> supported which is not the case now in most browsers. Too bad, because 

Implementing a unnecessarily general feature of CSS ('quotes' requires
tracking the quote nesting level over the entire document, not just for
ancestor/descendant relationships) just to support what I consider a
mis-feature of HTML (and one that's very rarely used on the web) isn't
appealing to me as a browser implementor.  It's not a feature that's
easy to make small, fast, and correct simultaneously.

-David

[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/2003/WD-xhtml2-20030506/mod-inline-text.html#sec_9.8.

-- 
L. David Baron                                <URL: http://dbaron.org/ >
Received on Saturday, 14 February 2004 23:25:47 UTC

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