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   Re: Summary: xml:lang validity and RFC 1766 refs to outdated codes

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  • From: John Cowan <jcowan@reutershealth.com>
  • To: Mike Brown <mbrown@corp.webb.net>
  • Date: Tue, 08 Aug 2000 13:35:12 -0400

Mike Brown wrote:

> Correct, but RFC 1766 doesn't, in turn, allow for successors to ISO 639 and
> ISO 3166, at least not by a strict interpretation of its formal language.
> And to date, there still is no successor to RFC 1766.

Right.  So

	<span xml:lang="roa">Yn nediwn seint yn llinghedig,
		yn nediwn seint yn cor</span>

is not proper XML, although it is well-formed, because the language tag
"roa" (Romance, Other) is not legal by RFC 1766.  But when RFC 1766 is
officially revised to include such language tags, it *will* be good XML.
> The use of "are" in that statement sounds as definitive as "must" to me.

No, because a violation of a "must" rule is a violation of well-formedness,
requiring the report of a fatal error and draconian error recovery.

> As
> an XML document author, or the programmer of an XML document authoring tool,
> tell me, do I or do I not use RFC 1766 language tags/identifiers as xml:lang
> values?

You do.

> It seems that XML says I must use them, but it would not a violation
> of validity if I didn't use them.

It is a violation of the intent of the xml:lang attribute not to use them.

> ...so the removal of productions 33-38 from XML really just seem to be
> intended to allow RFC 1766 and its successors determine the proper
> construction of a language tag, which makes more sense than trying to
> reiterate the RFC's technical contents in XML's specification.

Just so.

> It doesn't
> necessarily follow that xml:lang values can avoid conforming to RFC 1766.

They cannot avoid it.

Schlingt dreifach einen Kreis um dies! || John Cowan <jcowan@reutershealth.com>
Schliesst euer Aug vor heiliger Schau,  || http://www.reutershealth.com
Denn er genoss vom Honig-Tau,           || http://www.ccil.org/~cowan
Und trank die Milch vom Paradies.            -- Coleridge (tr. Politzer)


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