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[XHTML2] DESCRIPTION element (was: Re: [XHTML2] CITELANG, TITLELANG attributes)

From: Anne van Kesteren <fora@annevankesteren.nl>
Date: Wed, 28 Jul 2004 08:48:51 +0200
Message-ID: <41074C53.8070205@annevankesteren.nl>
To: "Jukka K. Korpela" <jkorpela@cs.tut.fi>
Cc: www-html@w3.org

> For TITLE, the origin is the problem is the approach of entering actual
> textual content into attributes. This is bad practice, and the original
> problem should be fixed instead of adding some extra features to remove
> some of the problems. Note that a TITLELANG attribute would not work when
> the TITLE attribute contains texts in two or more languages, which is a
> quite reasonable case. If the TITLE attributes were replaced by TITLE
> elements, for example, making each TITLE element specify, by definition,
> an informative title for its parent element, the problem would vanish in a
> puff of logic: the TITLE element could and should be allowed to have
> normal inline content, including elements with their own LANG (oops,
> sorry, xml:lang) attributes.

So instead of having a TITLE attribute a DESCRIPTION element would be 
needed? To not interfere with the "special" semantics of the TITLE element.

I have actually thought about such a thing before, since I wanted to 
include ABBR in the title to mark up abbreviations. Obviously, that was 

It would also allow much more flexibility to style with CSS. See for 
example pure CSS tooltips[1]. The only problem would be that it can be a 
child of every element, even SEPARATOR I guess. But I don't know much 
about that, it seems that Ian has a few objections in terms of 


  Anne van Kesteren
Received on Wednesday, 28 July 2004 02:50:08 UTC

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