[uf-discuss] Currency microformat

Andy Mabbett andy at pigsonthewing.org.uk
Tue Jul 18 10:47:31 PDT 2006

In message
<6ca82b0f0607172324j3aeb122aq510131fc68063d59 at mail.gmail.com>, Ben
Buchanan <wzqtptl02 at sneakemail.com> writes
>The classic problem example would be a page stating a price of "$50".
>Is that Australian dollars? US dollars? Monopoly money? :)

It seems to me that the issues with currency (whether or not
microformats are involved) are, or at least include:

Conveying the currency of the amount. Consider:

        <span class=currency-GBP>5.99</span>

[where currency-GBP could be styled in such a way that the
pound-sterling symbol is prepended (or appended, according to the
applicable language), in the same way that "<q>" tags don't require
separate quote marks - how would this degrade on non-CSS browsers,

This could equally be achieved by a new (X)HTML tag:

        <currency type="GBP">5.99</currency>

or some other mechanism; I'll use that hypothetical tag from now on, for
illustrative purposes.

Consider a defunct currency; one old UK Shilling (written "1/" or "1/-",
they hyphen representing zero pennies; equivalent of a modern GBP 0.05):

        <currency type="GBP" unit="shilling">1</currency>


        <currency type="GBP" unit="old-penny">6</currency>


        <currency type="GBP" equivalence="0.05">1/</currency>


        <currency type="GBP" equivalence="0.025">-/6</currency>

Indeed, we may wish to enable our user-agents to interpret an amount of
money in modern parlance:

        <currency type="GBP" unit="shilling" date="1890">1</currency>

Might be interpreted as:

        1/- (worth &pound;4.50 [1] in modern terms)

There would be further complications where the entire currency has
disappeared, (such as French Francs into Euros) rather than just the
fractions of the main unit (as old English shillings/ pennies, into
"new" pence):

        <currency type="FFR" equivalence="EUR0/1.52">10</currency>

[1] or whatever
Andy Mabbett
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