Target Audience: Software Engineer, Systems Analyst

Level of Session: Intermediate

The World Wide Web is developing very quickly. The basic components HTML (HyperText Markup Language; for text markup) and HTTP (HyperText Transfer Protocol; for transmission) are evolving, and formats such as XML (eXtensible Markup Language; for general markup) and CSS (Cascading Style Sheets; for styling information) being used more and more.

In this quickly moving environment, internationalization is important to make sure that all users worldwide can equivalently benefit from web technology. For HTML, had to be added in because it was not available in the original proposal. It took quite a while until this reached mainstream status with HTML 4.0. For XML and CSS, the model of HTML with respect to transmitting and escaping characters was followed, and the necessay features were built into these formats from the start, with only minor differences.

The tutorial will give an introduction for internationalization on the World Wide Web. It will focus on HTML as a document format, but will also discuss other formats. It will show how the various web formats are based on Unicode/ISO 10646 while allowing other encodings to be used where appropriate. It will discuss the various markup features added to HTML for internationalization, such as language markup (also in XML) and bidirectionality. It will show how multilingual sites can be created and managed using the features available in HTTP such as language negotiation. Advanced topics will include multilingual typography, translation services, and parallel texts.

When the world wants to talk, it speaks Unicode
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7 Jun 1999, Webmaster