NETIQUETTE (Was Re: Une mailing liste en franais)

Peter Murray-Rust peter at
Thu Dec 10 19:26:39 GMT 1998

The discussion below is totally inappropriate for XML-DEV. I have received
(private) feedback with which I completely agree. Whether or not this is
meant as a joke is irrelevant - there are people who are offended.

Those developing XML have put ***enormous*** effort into developing
internationalization (i18n) into XML. And this has reaped its dividends -
Jon Bosak was speaking in London on Tuesday and was able to show us
Japanese versions of XML documents where the only "English" was in the
keywords (!ELEMENT, etc.). Indeed in a well-formed XML document there need
be no "English" at all.

Europeans (yes, I am a European) are extremely sensitive about language and
the threat of minority languages disappearing. I am conscious of my own
poor showing in non-English languages (though I have made a modest effort).
In this respect XML should be extremely helpful as it allows the creation
of documents in all the world's languages with the use of Unicode (although
Unicode is not a perfect solution to the culture and meaning associated
with some languages).

I personally welcome an XML list in French and will subscribe. Partly this
will help me keep in touch with French, but it is also extremely valuable
to know that this resource is there if I need it. At present many tools are
not good at supporting diacritical marks and other non ASCII characters and
more difficult language conventions. It is likely that this list will help
to produce robust solutions.

Also, it has been a pleasure over the last few days both in Vienna (for the
W3C-LA exhibit at IST98) and in London this week (W3C-LA) to meet the
French team in W3C. When you reflect on the benefits that the W3C effort
has brought you, remember that a substantial portion comes from INRIA in


At 13:22 10/12/98 +0100, Ketil Z Malde wrote:
>anette.engel at writes:
>>> A new XML list in french has just been created.
>> This will be a very usefull site for all non-french-speaking people.
>Probably not, but it might be extremely useful for all French
>non-English speakers.
>> Thank goodness that not all europeans insist of having their xml list
>> in their own lanuage.
>Yes, there should be a law or something.
>Hey, I've got an idea - why not have the XML standard require all
>documents to be in English?  That way, documents will be universally
>understandable and accessible to all.

Peter Murray-Rust, Director Virtual School of Molecular Sciences, domestic
net connection
VSMS, Virtual Hyperglossary

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