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John Cowan wrote:
> > Either one could agree a common set of definitions across
> > all the major vocabularies, so that in practice the problem
> > doesn't arise even if the architecture doesn't really
> > provide any support. As I've said earlier, I can't see this
> > happening unless the W3C XML activity takes that on as a
> > work item.
> Why not the IETF, or ISO, or OASIS? Or a task force drawn
> from the various interested parties which reports proposed
> changes to each of its member bodies? Or a SAXstyle
> benevolent dictator who has enough clout to carry it
> through?
Why not Unicode.org? It could create short name "aliases" of the long
name descriptions.
Example: grepping UnicodeData.txt for "GAMMA" gives the following:
0194;LATIN CAPITAL LETTER GAMMA
0263;LATIN SMALL LETTER GAMMA
0264;LATIN SMALL LETTER BABY GAMMA
02E0;MODIFIER LETTER SMALL GAMMA
0393;GREEK CAPITAL LETTER GAMMA
03B3;GREEK SMALL LETTER GAMMA
213D;DOUBLESTRUCK SMALL GAMMA
213E;DOUBLESTRUCK CAPITAL GAMMA
1D6AA;MATHEMATICAL BOLD CAPITAL GAMMA
1D6C4;MATHEMATICAL BOLD SMALL GAMMA
1D6E4;MATHEMATICAL ITALIC CAPITAL GAMMA
1D6FE;MATHEMATICAL ITALIC SMALL GAMMA
1D71E;MATHEMATICAL BOLD ITALIC CAPITAL GAMMA
1D738;MATHEMATICAL BOLD ITALIC SMALL GAMMA
1D758;MATHEMATICAL SANSSERIF BOLD CAPITAL GAMMA
1D772;MATHEMATICAL SANSSERIF BOLD SMALL GAMMA
1D792;MATHEMATICAL SANSSERIF BOLD ITALIC CAPITAL GAMMA
1D7AC;MATHEMATICAL SANSSERIF BOLD ITALIC SMALL GAMMA
The Greek aliases would come from the XHTML entities (Gamma and gamma);
the others could be names like LGamma, DSgamma, MBIGamma.
Canonizing names may be useful for some cases in the short term, but
building them in to XML parsers will likely prove to be a black hole,
even excluding the size issue. For example, when they add the Egyptian
hieroglyphs to Unicode, what happens in nonupdated parsers when the
scholar writes "&TwistedFlax; represents the 'H' sound."?
A canonized shortname alias table could however be quite useful. It
wouldn't solve the "why can't we declare entities in {name your favorite
anglebracketed schema language}?" moan, but it could go a long way to
resolved the name conflicts discussed here (like ≈).
<!DOCTYPE doc [
<!ENTITY % full SYSTEM "http://example.org/unicode32.ent";>
%full;
]>
"The Hebrew &Alef; and the Arabic &Alif; have a common heritage..."
Or
<!DOCTYPE doc [
<!ENTITY % western SYSTEM "http://example.org/western.ent";>
%western;
]>
for the XHTML, Docbook, Greek, Math and common western symbols. Or you
could combine the small subsets: %western; and %semitic;. Or even more
specifically %western; and say %syriac;. Why include all Unicode if you
don't need it?
Anybody here participating in the Unicode constortium?
But ... I don't see how you can build this into, say, XML 2.x without
opening up a big can of worms. You could, I suppose, build in just
%western;, since those are the currently the problems being discussed
here, but I have doubts as to how such a move would go over in Beijing,
Baghdad, and Bangalore. Not to mention that such a "solution" is quite
narrowly focused on today's culture.
/Jelks
