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Re: translations of documentation

Raul Miller <rdm@test.legislate.com> writes:

> Overall, it looks good to me, but note that mostly what you've defined
> here is a framework for localizing changes to a particular region of
> a document.
> Given this point of view, I'm a little dubious about declaring that
> certain >>kinds<< of document elements are always structural or always
> floating. In my opinion it makes more sense to simply define an
> attribute which may be put on a floating element, and let the document
> author declare what can float.

Me too.  But unless we then want to limit the system to handling
simply one DTD, or just the set of DTDs we modify to have these
attributes, we should use an SGML Formal Architectural.  SP supports
this and it would even make the building of our parser interface and
tree comparison code easier.  I didn't want to introduce Formal
Architectures, because I wanted to keep the complexity down, but I
think that if we do statically define wether an element is always
floating or structural we severely limit the usefullness.  

In that implementation we simply can modify the prolog to indicate how
the translation to the LI architecture should be done, and allow the
author to specify the behavior of particular instances of elements
with attributes.  This allows us to default to same suitably general
behavior for structural and floating elements, but would allow a
anal-retentive documenter to do some very particular specifiction of
the LI structure of the document, possibly including ordinality and
cardinality.  The drawback is this may tend to get a bit complex,

> As I understand it, this "floating element" concept comes from the idea
> that illustrations and sidebars should be near the text that refers to
> them but that their placement is a layout issue, not an editorial issue.
> However, it can quite easily happen, for example, that a table is a
> part of the text, and for it to make sense it should appear between
> two paragraphs.

Correct, but the creator of the master document cannot assume that his
assumption about the relation of the text to the paragraph is the same
across all languages being targeted for translation.  For all he knows
a vertical layout is used for some language, and tables and images are
printed in a seperate column to the side.  So the previous proposal
would have required him to make P and TABLE floating for the entire
document.  This example is a bit of a stretch, but I'm hungry and
unimaginative at the moment.

> This isn't a real big issue in my opinion -- which is why I don't
> want to see us develop an elaborate mechanism for handling it.

I agree.  I think that we will overload ourselves with complexity if
we try and come up with a way of distilling a nearly perfect LI
representation of a document that deals comprehensivly with
cardinality, ordinality, and containment.  We just want a quick way to
find out wether or not the documenter A added a new section on feature
Y to the document and which translations don't have that feature

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