Re: Summary: xml:lang validity and RFC 1766 refs to outdated codes

From: John Cowan (
Date: Tue Aug 08 2000 - 13:35:12 EDT

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.

> 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 <> Schliesst euer Aug vor heiliger Schau, || Denn er genoss vom Honig-Tau, || Und trank die Milch vom Paradies. -- Coleridge (tr. Politzer)

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Tue Jul 10 2001 - 17:21:06 EDT