[sword-devel] Tagging verses and verse lists

Eeli Kaikkonen eekaikko at mail.student.oulu.fi
Wed Dec 19 07:55:40 MST 2007

On Thu, 20 Dec 2007, Jonathan Morgan wrote:
> A good point that hadn't occurred to me (I'm still very much an ASCII
> man).  For Sword, UTF-8 might end up best, but technically it is one
> of the worst formats possible.  Its only redeeming feature is that it
> allows existing 7-bit ASCII to work unchanged.  For the rest, I need
> to employ special parsing techniques to ensure that it is parsed
> correctly.  I prefer 16-bit character unicode, since it is a very
> simple and direct representation at the level of intent, which still
> allows my array accesses to work correctly and so on.

I don't quite follow you. Most platforms (modern programming languages &
libraries etc.)  use unicode internally but can use utf8 as a data
exchange encoding. I don't see why this is a special situation.
Conversion should be possible with any platform and the Sword library
users have to handle conversions anyways, even all modules use either
utf8 or some other encoding, not unicode. It's just much easier if we
have only one standard encoding.

I can understand what you say if you have worked only with standard
c/c++ libraries but all important toolkits should have their own string
implementations and there is no need to handle low-level unicode/utf8
features because the libraries take care of them.

> I view the description and comments as simple plain-text comments, and
> so do not see the need for markup.

Me too. This is the exact failure with the Personal Commentary, we have
to avoid it here and keep things simple because markup is not needed.

> As said just before, I think the verse range is the most compelling
> one (though this gets more interesting if we want to deal with more
> than just Bible references).

There is no limit to how long a range can be (a whole book perhaps or
even more) and it cannot be broken to single verses, that seems quite
clear to me. But how about a list of verses? Should it be possible to
represent e.g. a search result as one bookmark or is it enough to break
it to several bookmarks under one header? WWUW (What Would Users Want)?
If an app lets a user to save a search result as a bookmark how it
should be represented in a UI? Maybe a list of bookmarks is enough, I
don't know.

> I don't see this as a problem.  So long as Sword defines the
> attributes that the thing can have, no information will be physically
> lost.


> If applications choose to display a subset of the data
> available then that is probably a little unfortunate for the user, but
> it will not actually lose them data.  Applications should be
> recommended to make the data available in some form, but I don't think
> it is required.

Yes, and now we just have to guess how unfortunate it can be for the

But this is just one example of the ordinary "must/should/may" options
in many (internet) standards. Bookmarks must have folders and bookmark
items, folders must have editable names, folders and bookmarks may have
comments, if comments are supported there must be no markup and the
application should support both short oneliners and longer text. Etc.

	Eeli Kaikkonen (Mr.), Oulu, Finland
	e-mail: eekaikko at mailx.studentx.oulux.fix (with no x)

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