[whatwg] sarcasm

ddailey ddailey at zoominternet.net
Tue Apr 24 19:56:04 PDT 2007

On Tuesday, April 24, 2007 9:34 PM David Walbert wrote

  On Apr 24, 2007, at 9:19 PM, Jon Barnett wrote:

    That could also apply to other tones of voice where context doesn't make it obvious, such as irony, anger, suspicion, elation, and veiled threats. 

  But if you mark it up, it won't be a veiled threat anymore.
No it won't but it might help somebody else translate your work into another language.

A couple of thoughts --

a. I rather like this sort of thing -- I wrote a note to the HTML WG a month or so ago (in reflection on the <abbr> <acronym> debate -- no I am not trying to reopen that) about a variety of allied issues: graphemic, pronunciation-related, and semantic http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2007JanMar/0458.html . It may have not been the proper audience, or perhaps it will become a part of the standard, or maybe it was just plain dumb, I am not sure yet. <humor backward-pointer="1sentence"/>

b. The W3C has a "reasoning with uncertainty" incubator WG. I would be quite uncertain myself in making any proper explanation of what they do.  But I can say it looks pretty worthwhile and at least tangentially relevant to the markup of "authorial intent" which itself can go a long way toward exposing those inferences that can be appropriately associated with our utterances.

c. Consider a non-normative (descriptive) study of all those "odd" orthographic conventions that people have invented (including cross cultural and historical studies of punctuation) leading up to modern <quasi> markup </quasi> -related neologisms (including such things as -; and <happyface/>) . Such studies might help to expose (for example) the different contextual meanings of parenthesis -- back in grad school some 30+ years ago I counted something like 10 different meanings of parentheses in running English text) . 

These would all be good studies I think. Such analyses would help bridge the gap between semantics1 (as used by humans) and semantics2 (as used by compilers and interpreters) and could bring value to any new markups that seek to empower humans to express themselves with clarity.

example: "when I speak of ambiguity, I speak with no <ambiguous>ambiguity</ambiguous>" <humor backward-pointer="1sentence"/>

d. Folks who appear to represent some of the other WG's within W3C seem to be receptive to these sorts of discussions of what we might call "markup of authorial intent."

David Dailey
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