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RE: [xml-dev] Xlink Isn't Dead

At 01:04 AM 9/23/2006, Bob DuCharme wrote:
>(My addendum: sorry, I sent off that last one before it was done.)

         The curse of the "send" button. Since instant messengers 
have become popular, I've also learned the evil ways of the enter key. :^)

>Either way, the point is that we store the semantics of the content and
>the link relationship(s) in a device-independent format, and then we use
>the stylesheet language of our choice to convert it into something
>appropriate to the medium where we want to output it. I chose XSLT 1.0 to

         The question is: can the medium support it?

         There's no straightforward, standardized way to support 
anything other than single-ended, unidirectional links via CSS or 
XSL-FO. There ought to be. This is my primary contention.

>If we can all convert
>the same XML into our chosen output medium with our favorite stylesheet
>language or API, then that XML was well-designed, and I (and, I believe,
>Michael Kay) believe that this should apply to linking relationships as
>well as the roles of block and inline elements of content.

         The only problem being if the most used stylesheet languages 
aren't capable of supporting it. Again, this is my primary 
contention. My secondary issue is that XLink went about it the wrong 
way, for a variety of reasons. Link behavior should not be explicitly 
declared in the markup. I used to support that approach, because I 
wanted to honor the intention of the document author, rather than the 
stylesheet author.

         With CSS, at least, I'm starting to see ways that I can have 
my cake and eat it, too.

>Your original example had no indication that it was supposed to be
>anything but a unidirectional, single-ended link. Some feel that all such
>link descriptions should by default be considered one end of a
>bidirectional link, but if we are to treat this link as one of those, this
>has to be indicated either in the markup or in some documentation about
>the default behavior of the system being described.

         True, I didn't make use an example that was anything but 
your typical, HTML-style link. But if I had, we still come back to 
the same point: there is no way to represent anything but basic links 
using CSS or XSL-F0. Without resorting to scripting tricks, or 
awkward HTML output, you simply can't do anything smart with links 
using either of those stylesheet languages.

         And the need is there. I've given several examples in this thread.


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