[thelist] Bold vs. Strong

Joshua Olson joshua at waetech.com
Wed Aug 13 07:31:46 CDT 2003

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Keith Dahlby" <dahlbyk at softhome.net>
Sent: Wednesday, August 13, 2003 1:59 AM

> ><b> doesn't impart semantic meaning, only visual style... it's also a
> >much shorter element than <span class="bold"> (or whatever class name
> >you choose to assign)... and <b> is still a valid tag in HTML 4.01
> >(go ahead, use this to start the XHTML debate)...
> To preemptively ward off any HTML/XHTML debate, the b and i elements are
> indeed valid XHTML 1.0 Strict. I wouldn't expect to see them in XHTML 2.0,
> but the img element will probably disappear too...RIP.

Keith, (and rudy, aardvark, et al)

I'm not really sure if anybody'll back down on this argument, but I do have
one more general question... since XHTML is eXtensible HTML, would it be an
option to define a new HTML tag in the DTD so that the markup still reflects
the meaning of the information and not the presentation?

Example using rudy's example of the skim text:

Define the tag <skim> in the DTD, apply font-style: bold to it via css, and
then markup the text as follows:

bold is a <skim>visual scanning cue</skim> in this context, and it would
<skim>not make sense</skim> to have aural browsers <skim>emphasize</skim>
words while actually <skim>reading the copy</skim>.

The danger would seem to be--assuming that I'm in the correct mindset this
morning--that defining one's own tags willy-nilly defeats one major purpose
of XHTML... interoperability.  Other systems may be able to derive the
syntax from the definition file, but they won't necessarily know what the
new tags mean in the broader sense.

?? Thoughts?

Joshua Olson
Web Application Engineer
WAE Tech Inc.

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