As the year is approaching its end, this is the time for new year
resolutions. For me it has been the same for the past three years:
stop smoking and start doing something serious with TEI...
In an attempt to start even before the new year begins, I encountered
problems - some old, and some new.
1. Personal, place and other names
This is partly an old one. I have been using:
<!ENTITY % x.data "persName|placeName|">
as advised by Lou Burnard and Peter Flynn. It seemed to work fine so
I felt confident and expanded the "magic line" to:
<!ENTITY % x.data "persName|placeName|person">
only to find out that <person> does not allow #PCDATA, so that I cannot
Lord Jim and his wife
as two <person>'s. Moreover, <person> and <personGrp> are only allowed
within the document profile in <teiHeader> for listing participants
in a linguistic event.
The definition of <name> in P3TAG.DOC (ie. Chapter 35) says in part:
<name> (i.e. name, proper noun)
Description: contains a proper noun or noun phrase.
Remarks: Proper nouns referring to people, places, and
may be tagged instead with <person>, <place>, or <org>.
So it seems that the original intention was to use <name> and <rs> for
proper nouns and descriptive strings respectively, with a possibility
of using <rs> only for both. Thus their functional equivalents in a more
detailed encoding would be the pairs: <person> and <persName>, <place> and
<placeName>, <org> and <orgName>. But even though <place> and <org> are
used in examples and recommended, they are not available in the DTD's
nor discussed elsewhere in the Guidelines. Thus
is a less precise (or indirect) way of saying:
Another difference in behaviour is that while <placeName> may appear
inside itself, <persName> cannot. So while it is possible to have
<placeName>Greenwich near <placeName>London</placeName></placeName>
doing the same with "Kenneth mac Alpin" or "Elizabeth wife of Philip"
is not allowed by the DTD.
... and now something completely different.
2. Encoding vs. software
It has been pointed out recently here (sorry, I don't remember who it was)
that one of the greatest problems with TEI is to convince those in charge
of money that it is worthwhile to invest in it. This is, unfortunately,
very true, and though I love using emacs for tagging, I don't even think
of showing it to the uninitiated who carry the moneybag. In one of those
rare lucky moments I managed to get some funds for SGML software with more
microsoftish look and now experiment with PanoramaPro styles. I thought
it would be impressive to switch between abbreviated and expanded forms
with a mouseclick, but it seems difficult in Panorama.
The standard (and logical) way of encoding abbreviations is:
(or the other way round). In Panorama styles the attribute can be
displayed before or after the content of the element, but not instead
of it. When the content is hidden, the attributes also disappear. So
perhaps this could be done in this way:
hiding either one or the other element using styles. I do not like such
solution, however, as it seems to be too much software-dependent
(the most obvious example is when the file is stripped of the tags by
a simple script, it becomes unreadable).
Does anyone know any tricks with Panorama+TEI which would impress
knowledgable but traditionalist scholarly editors?
All my best wishes for the New Year to all TEIsts (and aTEIsts, too) :-)
Rafal T. Prinke
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