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Subject: Re: [docbook-apps] using curly quotes for epubs -- best practices?

Regarding the XSLT language code, the template for quote eventually calls the utility template named l10n.language, which uses the current element (<quote>) as the context and scans ancestor-or-self for the closest xml:lang attribute to determine the language, and falling back to the default language of English. So, yes, putting xml:lang on the quote element would work.

Bob Stayton
Sagehill Enterprises

On 11/30/2017 6:39 PM, Robert Nagle wrote:
Thanks to you and Ron for your ideas about how to deal with this issue. Wow, I didn't even know that the quote element even existed.  Both solutions are interesting:

richard: I notice that QUOTE will surround the sentence with span tags and then presumably insert the language-appropriate version of quotes. Where does Docbook XSLT figure out the appropriate language? It looks like the default language is English, but  if I have a passage where the language is different and uses different quotation marks, would the attribute xml:lang be sufficient?


On Thu, Nov 30, 2017 at 6:50 PM, Richard Hamilton <hamilton@xmlpress.net <mailto:hamilton@xmlpress.net>> wrote:

    Hi Robert,

    I avoid the issue entirely by using the DocBook <quote> element.

    The <quote> element gives you language appropriate quotation marks,
    and it will also handle quotes within quotes, which is a nice touch.

    I don’t know of any automated smart quote processing in the DocBook
    stylesheets (in fact, I’m nearly certain there isn’t any, beyond
    processing <quote>).

    If you have existing text with curly or straight quotes in the
    source, converting them can be a bit tricky. I use emacs macros to
    replace quoted text with <quote>…</quote>, and that works
    surprisingly well. I match on the opening quote, capture everything
    until the ending quote, then replace with <quote>captured
    text</quote>. You need to be careful, since misplaced quotes can
    cause some strange results, and you need to handle both curly and
    straight opening and closing quotes, but generally it works well.

    I think you can do something similar in Oxygen, but I haven’t done
    it myself. Check out this page and look for the discussion about
    “capturing groups":

    I hope that helps.

    Best regards,
    Dick Hamilton
    XML Press
    XML for Technical Communicators
    hamilton@xmlpress.net <mailto:hamilton@xmlpress.net>

     > On Nov 30, 2017, at 16:13, Robert Nagle
    <idiotprogrammer@gmail.com <mailto:idiotprogrammer@gmail.com>> wrote:
     > Up to now I've avoided dealing with the issue of smart quotes
    (curly quotes)  by simply dealing with straight quotes in my docbook
     > About 75% of my source comes from MS Word, and I then find some
    way to paste or convert into Docbook XML.
     > Another 25% comes from .txt or from content I actually edit in
     > When I paste from MS Word to HTML, I often would get encoding
    errors. Even when I didn't get encoding errors, the conversion would
    be inconsistent or difficult to proof.
     > Personally I could care less about smart quotes vs. curly quotes,
    and honestly I believe that the reading system should be handling
    the conversion from straight to curly quotes, but if the work
    involved in getting curly quotes was minimal enough, I'd consider
    doing it.
     > I was wondering whether anyone here has created  best practices
    to make sure curly quotes are consistently implemented. (Does
    Docbook have anything to do with it?). I use Oxygen, but I don't see
    any option in Author mode to use only curly quotes.
     > I usually just paste .txt files into a docbook file in  Author
    mode of Oxygen. I don't really know of an easy way to do
    search/replace without requiring a lot of quality control. Does
    anyone have any ideas?
     > Thanks for your input.
     > Robert Nagle
     > --
     > Robert Nagle
     > 22118 FINCASTLE DR KATY TX 77450-1727
> (Cell) 832-251-7522 <tel:832-251-7522>; (Skype) idiotprogrammer; Carbon Neutral Since Jan 2010

Robert Nagle
22118 FINCASTLE DR KATY TX 77450-1727
(Cell) 832-251-7522; (Skype) idiotprogrammer;  Carbon Neutral Since Jan 2010

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