HTML Entities or Decimals
10:05AM — Saturday November 17, 2012.
I had issues with the RSS feed for this site. The feed validator was telling me that using a HTML entity like
‘ was invalid. I don’t know much about XML, but it seemed strange; I had escaped the character; I hadn’t just pasted in a ‘curly’ quotation mark.
Turns out XML doesn’t like some HTML entities. Using
∞ for the infinity symbol isn’t good enough, you need to use the HTML decimal
∞. However, it seems that using
& for an ampersand is valid. XML is an indiscriminate beast.
I guess that’s why SmartyPants et al. convert characters to HTML decimals rather than entities; the decimal will always work, the entity won’t.
I’ve updated the character reference table on Style Manual accordingly.