forrest-dev mailing list archives

Site index · List index
Message view « Date » · « Thread »
Top « Date » · « Thread »
From Miles Elam <>
Subject Re: more validation suckage..
Date Thu, 21 Nov 2002 22:50:21 GMT
Steven Noels wrote:

> Nicola Ken Barozzi wrote:
> > But his need is still there and it's not only his IIUC. <i><b>
> > </b></i> is a common construct, and till I don't understand if any
> > why there is a need for a third empasis I don't know if we should
> > create a <strongem> </strongem> tag or not...

I agree that bold and italic (<b> and <i>) bleed into layout way too 
much, but what about nesting <em> tags?  DocBook and variants have an 
<emphasis /> tag which allows other <emphasis /> tags as children so 
there is precedent in widely available semantic markup.

Personally I think the practice is odious in general simply because it 
encourages literary laziness in many cases: using bold and italics 
instead of using appropriately forceful phrasing.  However people are 
people and really like their bold and italicized text.  The "right" 
thing is rarely the popular thing.

Why not leave it to the stylesheets?

  Prevent nesting: <xsl:template 
match="em|b|i|u//em|b|i|u"><xsl:apply-templates /><xsl:template>
  Convert the tags: <xsl:template match="b|i|u"><em><xsl:apply-templates 
  Remove the tags: <xsl:template match="em|b|i|u"><xsl:apply-templates 

These can be enabled/disabled easily with <xsl:import /> or <xsl:include 
/> to a separate file.

  em {
    font-style: italic;
  em em {
    font-weight: bold;
  em em em {
    text-decoration: underline;

Enabled/disabled by @import urls.  A documentation administrator could 
simply remove the styling from any layout markup, make it uniform across 
all pages, or let it stand as is.

Then it's up to the documentation manager whether they want to encourage 
the behavior by using skins that accentuate the markup or discourage it 
by downplaying the markup rendering.

Choices given, but I would be in favor of ommiting them by default. 
 Then when people go to find out how to put their bold and italics back 
in, they can see a page that describes why it's generally a bad idea 
anyway.  And in using the <em> tag, you can enforce some uniformity in 
the docs with regard to the visual representation of emphasis.

My $0.02

- Miles

View raw message