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Subject: RE: Handling HTML and FO semantics

Norman Walsh [mailto:ndw@nwalsh.com] wrote:

> A few days ago, I wanted to add a rel attribute to a generated HTML
> link. There's no obvious way to do this, so I just banged in an
> extension to allow html:rel (actually, html:*) attributes on link
> (actually, everywhere):
>   <link xlink:href="somewhere" html:rel="whatever">...</link>
> Now today, I've coincidentally stumbled across this:
>   <imagedata fileref="figs/print/db5d_ref10.pdf" format="PDF"
>              role="keep-together"/>
> I wonder if it wouldn't be better expressed as
>   <imagedata fileref="figs/print/db5d_ref10.pdf" format="PDF"
>              fo:keep-together="always"/>
> I'm tempted to suggest allowing (any) namespace-qualified attributes on
> DocBook elements to enable this sort of thing.

I fear that this has the potential to make documents too output-specific. I would say that in your two examples, using HTML and FO namespaces would inaccurately characterize the attributes as output-specific. Link relationships could apply to many potential output formats, and keep/break formatting certainly does. Furthermore, a link relationship is not a presentational attribute, but a semantic one, and as such I think it belongs in the semantic markup. Currently this could be done using one of the DocBook effectivity attributes. If it might be widely used, perhaps it should be under consideration as an additional attribute in a future version of DocBook.

Rob Cavicchio
Principal Technical Writer & Information Architect
EMC Captiva
Information Intelligence Group
EMC Corporation
3721 Valley Centre Drive, Ste 200
San Diego, CA 92130

P: (858) 320-1208
F: (858) 320-1010
E: rob.cavicchio@emc.com

The opinions expressed here are my personal opinions. Content published here is not read or approved in advance by EMC and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of EMC.

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