[whatwg] citations

fantasai fantasai.lists at inkedblade.net
Sat Apr 16 11:53:03 PDT 2005

Ian Hickson wrote:
> On Sat, 16 Apr 2005, Rob Mientjes wrote:
>>>Would it make sense to allow it for books? I don't know. Maybe the 
>>><cite> element needs a "type" attribute that takes values like 
>>>"person", "ship", "publication"? What other names do people want to 
>>>mark up?
> I actually meant the <name> element should, although one option is indeed 
> to co-opt <cite> for this (I don't really like that idea though).

"But there's no ship as can match <cite>The Interceptor</cite> for speed."


> The thing is we don't want to start making people do:
>    <cite><name type="person">Ian</name></cite> said <q>Hello</q>.
> ...when all they need to do is write:
>    Ian said "Hello".
> Is there any advantage to marking up people's names?

Depends on what you want to do with them, really. In most cases it's not
necessary, since in most cases you don't want to do anything special with
them. However, although the average person's name is usually not treated
specially, holy figures sometimes are. Ancient egyptians put pharoahs'
names in a special cartouche; more modern works, iirc, put some holy
persons' names in small-caps.

> Maybe we should just let ship names be marked up by <i> (it is, after all, 
> an instance of use of a term, as it were), and say that <cite> can be used 
> for any reference to a publication, including those that aren't really 
> citations ("my favourite book is <cite>...</cite>").

The distinction between a citation and a mention is oftentimes subtle, and
I am sure that many authors would confuse the two. So from a practical
perspective, this may be necessary. However, the main problem we have right
now is that there is no clear alternative to <cite>. So perhaps if there was
one -- a blatantly _obvious_ alternative -- it would not be as much of a

Another thing to think about:
   How does one mark up a bibliography? The whole entry is a <cite>, really,
   although only the title part should be in italics.


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