[whatwg] [web-apps] 2.7.8 The i element

Ian Hickson ian at hixie.ch
Sat Apr 16 06:55:09 PDT 2005

On Sat, 16 Apr 2005, Lachlan Hunt wrote:
> >
> > Is there any advantage to marking up people's names?
> The only reason I have ever marked up any name is for linking to their 
> home page or other page about them like this:
>   <a href="http://www.hixie.ch/">Ian Hickson</a> said <q>Hello</q>
> I see little reason to add specific elements for this purpose to a 
> general purpose markup language like HTML.


> > Maybe we should just let ship names be marked up by <i>
> Perhaps.  it's been argued many times before that i is the most suitable 
> element to use for such purposes; but then again, italics for ship names 
> is merely a typographical convention and the i element is as meaningless 
> as span.

Actually, <i> in HTML5 is currently defined as having specific semantics:


> > and say that <cite> can be used for any reference to a publication,
> Agreed, but...
> > including those that aren't really citations ("my favourite book
> > is <cite>...</cite>").
> I think it should be limited to cases where it really is a citation.  In that
> case, it would probably be better to mark that up as:
>   My favourite book is <a href="urn:isbn:0-735-71245-X">Eric Meyer on
>   CSS</a>.

What if there is no appropriate link, though? Or when I can't be bothered 
to find out what the link is?

Also, there's nothing that distinguishes that <a> from other <a> elements, 
yet there is something very different about that one -- it's the title of 
another work. I'd like to be able to style all such titles consistently, 
so they have to be marked up in some way.

Movie titles are similar. I'd like my UA to give me a tooltip containing 
information from IMDB for every movie title. With user JavaScript I can do 
this, if there's a way to recognise movie titles.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'

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