[tei-council] how much can one customize and still have a TEI document?

James Cummings James.Cummings at computing-services.oxford.ac.uk
Fri Jul 21 09:24:17 EDT 2006

David J Birnbaum wrote:
> Dear James (cc Council),
>> I'm still curious as to whether, if I produce an ODD that allows me to
>> rename
>> all the elements I'm using to docbook-like elements whether that is a TEI
>> document.  Does it matter if it is in the TEI namespace?  Or if I
>> present the
>> ODD with it?  The of course the question is what if I only rename 50%
>> of the
>> elements, but keep some TEI ones...is that document more a TEI document?
> P3 addressed this with an informal prose admonition (29.1.4), which
> survives in the current P5 materials:
>> Radical revision is possible. It would be possible to remodel so that
>> the <teiHeader> is not required, or that it is required but the
>> minimal components described in chapter 5
>> <http://www.tei-c.org/Vault/GL/P3/HD.htm> , are no longer required, or
>> that no <text> element is required. In fact, the mechanism, if used in
>> an extreme way, permits deletion of the entire set of TEI definitions
>> and their replacement by an entirely different DTD! Such revisions
>> would result in documents that are not TEI conformant in even the
>> broadest sense, and it is not intended that encoders use the mechanism
>> in this way.
> Is a more formal definition achievable? Desirable? Necessary?

Aha, I thought I had read something about it at some point in the distant past!
 I think if we are able to come to an agreement of a more formal definition
(given the increased encouragement to customise that P5/Roma/ODD suggests) then
we should have a more formal definition.  I don't believe it is necessary
however, and if it turns out that it is too difficult/problematic to reach an
agreement on it, then we should just have a prose description like this.  If we
had a formal definition that was both clear and not open to great abuse, then I
can't see that being undesirable?  (Or, as is likely, am I missing something?)


Dr James Cummings, Oxford Text Archive, University of Oxford
James dot Cummings at oucs dot ox dot ac dot uk

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