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Re: Cleaning House

From: Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@MIT.EDU>
Date: Thu, 03 May 2007 15:37:28 -0500
Message-ID: <463A4808.4040400@mit.edu>
To: public-html@w3.org
CC: www-html@w3.org

Gregory J. Rosmaita wrote:
> why?  these presentational relics will be with us, always, in the 
> name of backwards compatibility;  why not just map B to STRONG and 
> I to EM?

Fine by me, for purposes of specifying the parsing.  Saying that these 
equivalences hold (and hence that <b> is parsed the same way <strong> is, which 
is specified in the spec) would determine how <b> and <i> are to be parsed.

> why not leave the translation of B and I to an XSLT 
> transformation?

Because XSLT can't operate on things that are not well-formed XML?  That would 
be most of the web, last I checked.

> either you are for seperation of structure from presentation, or 
> you are not

Yes, yes.  Either I'm with you or I'm against you.  I've heard that a lot in 
recent years; never though it'd come up in a reasonable discussion about the 
future of web standards.

> HTML5 should NOT include any of the following 
> presentational elements:

As part of document conformance or user-agent conformance?

Quite frankly, I'm rather uninterested in the document conformance end of things 
for the time being.  I'm keenly interested in the user-agent conformance end of 
things.

> one could make a strong case that subscript and superscript have no 
> semantic meaning, but i don't think of them as presentational items, 
> but, rather, as meaningful holdovers from traditional typographic 
> conventions, and which are intended to mark the contained text in a 
> very specific and defineable manner.

This part I don't buy.  There's nothing more "semantic" about 
superscripts/subscripts than there is about italics.  For example, H<sup>1</sup> 
could have any of the following meanings off the top of my head just in mathematics:

1)  A number (or matrix, or whatever) H raised to the power one.
2)  First cohomology (group, vector space, etc).
3)  First component of a vector in differential geometry.
4)  A set of first-order expansions of elements of a set H (e.g. power series).
5)  First graded component of the graded object H.

There are probably plenty more, especially if you vary the letter and/or number.

Same for subscripts.

-Boris
Received on Thursday, 3 May 2007 20:37:40 GMT

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