Oliver Pereira wrote:
On Thu, 29 May 2003, Neil Harris wrote:
favorite suggestion is that second-level headings (H2)
should automatically become link targets.
I agree; this is the "obvious right thing" to do, in my opinion. We can
now argue about whether we should support references for these anchors
as [[article#fragment-text]], which also seems to be the "obvious thing" ?
I think that the very idea of linking to sections within articles is the
obvious *wrong* thing to do. The opening paragraph of an article is the
thing that establishes the subject matter and the context - basically,
what the article is all about. We can't just throw people into the middle
of an article and expect them to know what's going on. They'll have to
scroll back up to the top again anyway to check. If we don't want to just
confuse people, we'd have to make each section pretty much self-contained.
Hmm, a piece of writing that is self-contained and that you can link to.
Sounds like an article to me! If a section is autonomous enough to be
linked to, it is far more natural to separate it out and make it an
article all by itself than to give it some strange new semi-article
I think this is a case of people looking for technical solutions to a
problem that could be solved much more satisfactorily by sensible planning
I can see your point of view. I can also see the other point of view.
Both are sensible arguments, and I'm not sure which is right.
I feel that the design referred to is the "obvious right way" to do
this, if you are going to do it at all. No-one will be (or should be)
forced to use it, and it has the advantage that it can be made to
degrade gracefully to simple article links.
It's worth giving a try. We can then explore the fuzzy space between
"natural" articles and "natural" subsections, and see if it works. If
it's a bad idea, the generation of links to fragments can simply be
turned off, leaving the source intact, and links still linking to the
correct articles. If we really hate it, we can even go so far as to
programmatically remove the fragment tags from the article sources, and
it will be as if it had never been.