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Re: storing info in XSL-FO: new issue? [was: Draft TAG Finding:...]

From: Tantek Çelik <tantek@cs.stanford.edu>
Date: Mon, 19 Aug 2002 11:40:20 -0700
To: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>, Hċkon Wium Lie <howcome@opera.com>
Cc: Svgdeveloper@aol.com, www-tag@w3.org, www-style@w3.org
Message-id: <B98689A3.155BC%tantek@cs.stanford.edu>

On 8/16/02 9:20 AM, "Tim Bray" <tbray@textuality.com> wrote:

> This one is a tempest in a teapot.  In the spectrum of data formats, FOs
> sit beside PDF.  There are advantages and disadvantages to trade off
> between the two, none of which have the remotest architectural input.
> I would however, support an assertion in the architecture document that
> important information SHOULD be stored and (optionally) delivered with
> markup that is as semantically rich as achievable,

I don't think that is strong enough of a statement.  In particular, the
"optionally" part, presuming you are using the word "delivered" in the
context of the Web.

In would be better to simply state:

"information SHOULD be stored _and_ delivered with
 markup that is as semantically rich as achievable."

And provide a scale of the relative semantic richness of various formats,
something like:

    Semantic richness of various content formats
               (diagram not to scale)


Though others have provided much more detail and description on this topic.
See various WAI documents and independent papers [1].

> and that separation
> of semantic and presentational markup,
> to the extent possible, is
> architecturally sound.
> -Tim

Your use of the term "presentational markup" is very good example of why
this discussion is far more than a "tempest in a teapot".

That term has many (ill-conceived?) assumptions built into it.

Many consider a more proper separation to be:

 "separation of markup and presentation"

E.g. in WAI-WEBCONTENT[2], "Themes of Accessible Design":

 "Separate structure from presentation"

Of course that is a very general statement.  Guideline 3 from the same
document spells it out even better:

"Mark up documents with the proper structural elements. Control presentation
with style sheets rather than with presentation elements and attributes."

One conclusion that can be drawn from Guideline 3 is:

 "XML elements and attributes SHOULD NOT be used for presentation."

I believe this to be a sound architectural principle, and one that I
_thought_ W3C had adopted as a whole many many years ago when such elements
and attributes were deprecated from HTML4.



Received on Monday, 19 August 2002 14:31:12 UTC

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