[whatwg] HTML5 named entity ≫ and ≪

Jukka K. Korpela jkorpela at cs.tut.fi
Wed Dec 14 10:40:04 PST 2011

2011-12-14 19:34, Ilhan Y. wrote:

> By the way, can we have Unicode names (HTML names) for Mercury, Sun,
> Earth and other planets. They are used by many astronomers on the
> internet.

Nice parody! But maybe people won’t take it as parody.

After all, there is no rationale given for the inclusion of new “named 
character references,” so people might see the idea as asking authors to 
submit new proposals for every possible and impossible character.

The whole idea of extending the repertoire is wrong. We have lived with 
a certain set of entity references (now being renamed “named character 
references”), widely supported by browsers, except possibly in XHTML 
mode. Authors who need other characters can enter them as such, using 
UTF-8 (which is being favored, is it not?) or using numeric character 

So nobody really needs any added pseudo-mnemonic “named references,” and 
they just cause incompatibility: pages fail on most browsers, when they 
would work perfectly if other methods of including characters had been used.

Allowing &gt and &GT and > as synonyms for > might be pragmatic, 
if there is sufficient evidence of their use on legacy pages, but code 
checkers should issue a warning (there is nothing to be gained by using 
such deviating forms). And adding things like ≫, with a different 
meaning, is just asking for trouble.


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