RE: Official ISO 639 changes

From: Elliotte Rusty Harold (
Date: Tue Apr 25 2000 - 16:55:40 EDT

At 3:17 PM -0400 4/25/00, Fran┴ois Yergeau wrote:
>Some think than XML parsers should not validate the content of xml:lang and
>just pass it to the application. The spec would be understood to just say
>that the semantics are from RFC 1766 (or its eventual successor with
>3-letter codes).
>Others think that it is important for parsers to validate xml:lang. Adding
>3-letter codes then means a substantive change to the spec which may have to
>wait for XML 1.1 (or whatever the next version is).

Whether it's important or not, all XML 1.0 conforming parsers today
do check xml:lang values, at least to the extent of making sure
they're two letters and not three. Failing to do so is a
well-formedness error because of Production 35.

I guess the immediate question is whether or not a simple erratum
could make a change this big, or whether it really does need XML 1.1.
If we made this change now, then parsers would need to be rewritten
to conform to the revised spec. Documents that are not well-formed
according to the old spec would be well-formed according to the new
spec. However, all documents that conform to the old spec would still
conform to the new spec (provided we allowed both two and three
letter codes.)

| Elliotte Rusty Harold | | Writer/Programmer |
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