Internationalization and naming

david at david at
Mon Jan 4 20:00:23 GMT 1999

Simon St.Laurent writes:

 > Will English vocabularies be used, or will other languages be used?
 > In the current XML 1.0 spec, validation requires exact matching of
 > tag names, and as far as I can tell, there isn't any discussion of
 > validating a transformed document (via XSL or whatever) that
 > converts documents using French or Chinese element/attribute names
 > to English (or whatever the standard uses.)

 > This seems like something that the next generation of schemas could
 > address neatly, by providing room for something like a translation
 > table, identifying elements and their 'standard' equivalents.  This
 > could open up validation considerably, and possibly make it a lot
 > easier to get buy-in from user communities that perhaps have no
 > input toward the standards or their choice of language.

Simon: this is exactly the kind of thing that people can use
architectural forms for.  The full version of AFs suffers from the
common SGML difficulty of trying to solve so many different problems
that the complexity of the solution becomes yet another problem;
however, a simplified profile, like the one I used for XAF (in
retrospect, I'd simplify that much further) would fit the bill nicely.

Basically, AFs let you declare that there exists a view of the
document (an "architecture") where elements and attributes might have
different names: you then declare what attribute(s) you will use to
represent the canonical names.  For example, using the simplified XAF
profile (and using pig-Portuguese, since I don't claim to speak or
understand the language),

  <?xml version="1.0"?>
  <?is10744:arch name="html"?>

  <texto html="html">
   <parte-dianteira html="front">
    <título html="title">Exemplo em Portugues</título>
   <parte-principal html="body">
    <h1>Exemplo em Portugues</h1>
    <p>Este é um exemplo simples no português muito inábil.</p>

The problem with using a schema is that you either kill light-weight
XML processing or force the translation to take place upstream, so the
client doesn't have the opportunity to take advantage of the
non-English material.  This example isn't all that complicated (though
the declaration syntax will have to change a bit) -- it might even be
fun to add namespaces to the mix.

All the best,


David Megginson                 david at

xml-dev: A list for W3C XML Developers. To post, mailto:xml-dev at
Archived as:
To (un)subscribe, mailto:majordomo at the following message;
(un)subscribe xml-dev
To subscribe to the digests, mailto:majordomo at the following message;
subscribe xml-dev-digest
List coordinator, Henry Rzepa (mailto:rzepa at

More information about the Xml-dev mailing list