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RE: ISSUE-88 / Re: what's the language of a document ?

From: Phillips, Addison <addison@amazon.com>
Date: Mon, 22 Feb 2010 00:23:07 -0500
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>, Mark Davis ☕ <mark@macchiato.com>
CC: "www-international@w3.org" <www-international@w3.org>, HTMLwg WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <C7A5719F1E562149BA9171F58BEE2CA4129A1F2A05@EX-IAD6-B.ant.amazon.com>
> 
> On Sun, 21 Feb 2010, Mark Davis �~X~U wrote:
> >
> > I think that only allowing a single language to be specified is a
> > mistake. There are often multiple languages in a document, and
> forcing
> > one of them must be a "primary" language (and thus neglecting the
> > others) simply doesn't reflect reality. If that can be remedied,
> it
> > should be.
> 
> The text that refers to the "primary" language is regarding the
> lang=""
> attribute, which can in general be used on any element. It's
> straight-
> forward to have each language annotated separately.
> 
> (We can't make lang="" support multiple languages without defining
> how
> that works with CSS, speech synthesisers, etc, and as far as I know
> nobody
> has proposed a good way to do that.)
> 

The 'lang' attribute is scoped and is used to identify the language of a specific run of text. It really must not have multiple languages or many things (as you cite) will be broken as a result.

The problem that Mark (and Richard) are referring to (I think) is the <meta> pragma, which is not currently and should not be changed to be, IMHO, considered the "primary" language of the document. This pragma can contain a list of languages. One of these might be inferred to be the primary (outer) document processing language if the 'lang' attribute is missing. And that, in a nutshell, is what I think we're wrestling with here: whether the pragma should be wired up to 'lang' in that case, and, if it has more than one language, which language should be applied.

Addison
Received on Monday, 22 February 2010 05:23:42 GMT

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