[uf-discuss] existing currency formats: XBRL

Guillaume Lebleu gl at brixlogic.com
Mon Oct 2 12:49:14 PDT 2006

I took a look at the semantics used by XBRL for currency amounts (a 
standard for corporate financial reporting pushed among others by the SEC).

I have made an adaptation of them in semantic XHTML: 
http://microformats.org/wiki/currency-formats#XBRL (without 
incorporating existing thoughts on currency, just for the sake 
documenting just XBRL).

What's nice about these semantics is that:

    * In XBRL, a currency is just another simple unit of measure.
    * In XBRL, a unit of measure can be simple or complex. A simple unit
      of measure if for instance "feet" or "Dollars" while a complex
      unit of measure is "Euros per share".
    * Units of measurement can be specified anywhere in the XBRL
      document and assigned a unique identifier, then referred to from
      numerical facts.

Here are two examples from the page. The globally defined currency 
relies on an empty anchor. I don't know if anyone has an opinion about 
using anchors this way.

Locally defined currency:

<span class="price">100 <span class="unit">GBP</span></span>

Globally defined currency:

<span id="u1" class="unit">GBP</span>
<span class="price">100<a href="#u1" rel="unit"/></span>

If we incorporate some of the patterns that seem to emerge from the 
brainstorming page, we could have:

Locally defined currency:

<span class="price">100 <span class="unit currency" title="GBP">&#163;</span></span>

Globally defined currency:

Amounts in <span id="u1" class="unit currency" title="GBP">&#163;</span>
<td>100<a href="#u1" rel="unit"/></td>

Let me know what you think.


More information about the microformats-discuss mailing list