From: William F. Hammond <hammond@csc.albany.edu>

Date: 15 May 1999 10:13:23 -0400

Cc: www-math@w3.org, btate@cahners.com

Message-ID: <i7emkiqv3w.fsf@hilbert.math.albany.edu>

Date: 15 May 1999 10:13:23 -0400

Cc: www-math@w3.org, btate@cahners.com

Message-ID: <i7emkiqv3w.fsf@hilbert.math.albany.edu>

The following message is a courtesy copy of an article that has been posted to comp.text.sgml,comp.text.xml as well. "Brien Tate" <btate@cahners.com> writes: > I am seeking out reference documents which show the browsers and teh format > in which they support a spceial character. An example of this would be > whether or not I.E. 5.0 supports the Unicode definition of the @ sign, or > pi, or beta, or mu, etc...... . . . > As broad a reference as > possible would help as the development environment requires XML code to be > parsed for various final uses, including searching for those same special > characters in a large scale archive. IMHO, if you are preparing XML *source* documents for various final forms (not just handling by IE or NS), you might want to give serious thought to handling characters such as "pi" as empty elements, e.g., "<pi/>". You would not then put "<pi/>" into a document that is directly on the web. Instead you would pre-process the source document into a web document. Unicode makes sense only when one believes that it is usable in *every* final form. For example, I consider Texinfo, the language of the GNU Documentation System, -- an older hypertext language than HTML -- a useful alternative final source. That is, if I am going to the trouble to create an XML source document, then I want to have the option of processing that document to Texinfo. (Let's ignore for now the fact that (still) only the print side of Texinfo supports "<pi/>".) A mathematician might want to have, instead of just "<pi/>": 1. <pi/> -- a char in the Greek alphabet, not a symbol (#960). 2. <piu/> -- the universal mathematical constant (#982). 3. <piv/> -- a miscellaneous mathematical variable (#982). 4. <pio/> -- a miscellaneous mathematical function (#982). The mathematical distinctions do not exist in unicode. These distinctions, possibly more, are significant for 1. translation into XHTML with MathML. 2. smart searching. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- William F. Hammond Dept. of Mathematics & Statistics 518-442-4625 The University at Albany hammond@math.albany.edu Albany, NY 12222 (U.S.A.) http://math.albany.edu:8000/~hammond/ Dept. FAX: 518-442-4731 ----------------------------------------------------------------------Received on Saturday, 15 May 1999 10:13:45 GMT

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