entity names

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entity names

Michael Sperberg-McQueen
Postscript to my note on entity references.  I did not point out, as
perhaps I should have, that there have been some proposals in comments
on the TEI draft to use entity references for character set extension,
but to substitute other names (e.g. the standard identifiers used in ISO
6937 or ISO DIS (? or is it still DP?) 10646.  I won't detain everyone
with an explanation of what these are, beyond saying they typically have
the advantages of having names for *lots* of characters and often being
shorter than the names of entities provided in ISO 8879, together with
the disadvantage of being almost wholly opaque in their meaning.  (The
entity é designates letter LE11, è is LE13, etc.)
Recent reports also have it that the status of these 'short
identifiers' is in doubt for ISO 10646.  Those interested should
subscribe to the lists ISO8859 and ISO10646 at JHUVM, where full
technical details can be aired.

Like all formal comments on the draft, the proposal to use the 'short
identifiers' as entity names in TEI texts will receive formal
consideration by the responsible work group during the current cycle of
revision and extension.  At the moment, the work group is in transition
and has taken no position on this subject, but it will do so before the
end of this academic year, I hope.

I report this here because the suggestion might have a significant
effect on the external appearance, at least, of the mechanism I
described in my last note, and because it provides a chance to urge
*all* those with an interest in improving the Guidelines to file formal
comments and suggestions.  They will be considered, they will receive
formal and public replies, and if you have an interest in seeing the TEI
guidelines be useful, but do not participate in making them so, you will
have only yourself to blame for the flaws you could have corrected.

-C. M. Sperberg-McQueen