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<note> may be a good idea... was (Proposal for XHTML 2.0: The <footnote> element)

From: Richard Norman <normri@samc.com>
Date: Thu, 16 Jan 2003 10:12:40 -0800
Message-Id: <se2685a7.096@samc.com>
To: <www-html@w3.org>

I do think that note is worthy.  It is basically saying that this
particular thought is outside the main context of the document...  I
like that idea and user agents can go right past the note without
disrupting the flow of the text (thinking of non-visual user agents).
Creating foot notes may be a markup that should be considered..
Richard Norman

-----Original Message-----
From: Alexander Savenkov <w3@hotbox.ru> 
Sent: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 2:48 PM
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: <www-html@w3.org>
Subject: Re[4]: Proposal for XHTML 2.0: The <footnote> element


> On Wed, 15 Jan 2003, Alexander Savenkov wrote: 
>> Again and again, why do you people need a special element to markup
>> cases? HYPERLINK "http://www.w3.org/TR/css3_lists"
\nhttp://www.w3.org/TR/css3_lists _ see how Ian did that. 

> The way I did it in the CSS3 Lists spec is to lie about the semantics
> my document: I used the class attribute to change a paragraph from
> part of the main flow of text to being a note (footnote/sidenote)
If it was me styling some paragraphs like this I wouldn't be lying. 
As I already have said a piece of a text that you call 
"footnote/sidenote" is just another <p>, <section>, etc. 

At first it has to be asked: what do you mean by a footnote? If the 
answer is "a piece of text in smaller font" then one would say 
it's a matter of style. If the answer is "a piece of text outside the 
'main flow'" then an explanation is required. 

How often do people write paragraphs that are out of the context? How 
often do they employ footnotes as a container for those thoughts? Being 
out_of_context doesn't imply being a footnote. Some people would like 
to see it in a subsequent paragraph, some _ in brackets, some _ on the 

Thus, a new element for some specific "kind of thought" causes 
disorder. In case it's in XHTML2 get ready for <lyricaldigression>, 
<apropos>, <therefore>, etc. HTML is a general purpose language and a 
<footnote> is too specific for it in my view. 

> This is an abuse of the class attribute, as it means it cannot work
> user or UA stylesheets (since class attribute values are
Such an elegant explanation! 

> I would very much like to have a note_level element. I do not know if
> need different elements for sidenotes, footnotes, endnotes and so
> or if we just need one element, <note>, which can then be styled as
any of 
> the above using CSS, but I do think that we need an element for this. 

> I also think that notes should be allowed to appear anywhere, and be 
> allowed to contain any Flow content. 

> For example: 

>    <p> 
>     The cat 
>     <note> 
>      <h>The Cat</h> 
>      <p> 
>       The cat was still very cute, despite having: 
>       <ul> 
>        <li> lived many years </li> 
>        <li> lost his right ear </li> 
>        <li> fought many battles </li> 
>       </ul> 
>      </p> 
>     </note> 
>     sat on the mat. 
>    </p> 

> ...could be styled as: 

>    note { content: footnote; } /* proposed for CSS3 */ 

> ...or: 

>    note { float: right; border: solid; margin: 1em; padding: 1em; } 

> ...or any number of other possibilities. 
...Or just another piece of text in brackets. :) 

  Alexander "Croll" Savenkov                  HYPERLINK
"http://www.thecroll.com/" \nhttp://www.thecroll.com/ 
  w3@hotbox.ru                                     HYPERLINK
"http://croll.da.ru/" \nhttp://croll.da.ru/ 

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Received on Thursday, 16 January 2003 13:13:31 UTC

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