[sword-devel] Getting stuff done (Re: External links)

Ben Morgan benpmorgan at gmail.com
Tue Nov 25 17:04:29 MST 2008

On Wed, Nov 26, 2008 at 10:45 AM, Matthew Talbert <ransom1982 at gmail.com>wrote:

> > The point I was making was not that you can't encode it, but you lose the
> > semantic significance of it. The user can tell that <i>test</i> was
> added,
> > but the program can't - unless that is the only way <i> is ever used -
> which
> > it isn't. If you use italic formatting for anything else, you have lost
> > information - not presentation information - but the actual meaning is
> now
> > inaccessible to the program, as it can't necessarily tell what a
> particular
> > <i> means. If I want to mark translator added words in violet, or even
> allow
> > omitting them altogether, this is now not easily possible.
> I've been around long enough to know there is some disagreement here,
> but not long enough to really understand the issues. So my question
> isn't intended to create an argument, I just want to understand.
> If encoding in OSIS means that presentation information intended to be
> there by the publisher is lost, then why is that the preferred format?
> I would think that it would be really important to a publisher (or
> just to a module creator like me) that things are presented as they
> want them to be. Are you saying OSIS doesn't really allow that? If so,
> then shouldn't something else be used?

OSIS will allow some degree of presentation information (e.g. <hi type="i">)
Generally, you will present the OSIS how it is presented in a print Bible.
But sometimes, you may want to do something different - like omitting it,
changing how it looks, etc. Also, for something like poetry, this requires
special frontend support - but the end product for the ESV in BPBible, for
example, is very close to a print ESV. You can't really encode this with
ThML (that I know of).

If you just specified *how it looks*, not *what it actually is*, you can't
support very complicated layout. Especially since modules are restricted to

> <sync> (with type parameters of Strongs, morph, & lemma), <scripRef>, and
> <note> (plus closing tags where appropriate). HTML tags that ThML inherits,
> which may be used in SWORD modules include <div> (with types of sechead for
> section headings and title for titles, <i>, <br>, and <b>. Additional HTML
> tags may be interpreted by those SWORD frontends that render HTML, but will
> not be translated to RTF for the Win32 frontend.

So OSIS tries to encode what the publisher means, not how it happens to
look. How it looks will be decided by the frontend - but this will generally
adhere to print Bible conventions.

As well, using OSIS helps searchability - search in Words of Christ, omitted
text, poetry, etc.

God Bless,
Multitudes, multitudes,
   in the valley of decision!
For the day of the LORD is near
   in the valley of decision.

Giôên 3:14 (ESV)
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