[rfc-i] Is there a use case for 2119 keyword markup?

Brian E Carpenter brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com
Wed Jun 18 18:06:07 PDT 2014

On 19/06/2014 11:46, Paul Hoffman wrote:
> On Jun 18, 2014, at 4:50 PM, Heather Flanagan (RFC Series Editor) <rse at rfc-editor.org> wrote:
>> A question came up recently regarding whether there were any serious use
>> cases around semantically marking up RFC 2119 keywords (when used _as_
>> keywords) in the new format. 
>> In the HTML draft, it says:
>> 3.3.1.  Requirement Keywords
>>   The RFC2119 keywords in the document will be set off with special
>>   markup.  They are surrounded with a <span> element containing the CSS
>>   class rfc2119.  For example:
>>   They <span class='rfc2119'>MUST</span> be surrounded
>> For this to happen, we need to add something to the XML vocabulary as
>> well.  Does anyone have a use case where this kind of markup would be
>> useful, or is it just a "nice to have, because we can, but not if it
>> increases the overall cost of creating RFCs"?
> As a note, Heather has asked this a few times in the design team, and I haven't seen a use case other than "it will be easier for people to see when reading the RFC". That feels untrue to me, given that we have all gotten quite used to pattern-matching on capitalization.

I don't think that's the reason. I think the reason is precisely to
avoid any argument about which words are magic^H^H^H^H^Hnormative
and which are plain English.

I also think the proposal Heather included is the wrong way to do
this. MUST is really a separate entity and should be treated as such.
Hence, we should predefine the relevant entities as &must; &should;
etc. That separates the issue of meaning from the issue of presentation.


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