Monthly Archives: February 2005
Language tags are used to indicate the language of text in HTML and XML documents, and are also used in HTTP headers, SMIL and SVG switch statements, CSS pseudo-elements, etc. This article describes how to choose values for language tags.
By Richard Ishida & Martin Dürst, W3C.
Specifying the language of content is useful for a wide number of applications, from linguistically sensitive searching to applying language-specific display properties. In some cases the potential applications for language information are still waiting for implementations to catch up, whereas in others, such as detection of language by voice browsers, it is a necessity today. Marking up language information is something that can and should be done today. Without it, it is not possible to take advantage of any of these applications.
This document is one of a series of documents providing HTML authors with techniques for developing internationalized HTML using XHTML 1.0 or HTML 4.01, supported by CSS1, CSS2 and some aspects of CSS3. It focuses specifically on advice about specifying the language of content. It is produced by the Internationalization GEO (Guidelines, Education & Outreach) Working Group of the W3C Internationalization Activity.