If you've been around programming circles long enough, you'll probably have read the seminal "If PHP Were British". If not, go read it now. I'll wait.
I love the idea of a non-American programming language. I'm aware that there are some, but I'm unaware of any which are in British English. Except, perhaps, BBC Basic. Although that also allows traitorous American spelling for some keywords.
HTML was invented by a Brit (Hi Sir Timbl!). So why doesn't it use British spelling for everything?
Well, I guess, the answer is... it mostly does!
Looking through the big list of HTML elements only one is noticably in American English. The
<dialog> element was introduced reasonably recently in HTML 5.2. I would love to know if there were any late-night arguments about whether it should have been dialogue...
Center has a curious history.
CENTERwas introduced by Netscape before they added support for the HTML 3.0
DIVelement. It is retained in HTML 3.2 on account of its widespread deployment.
HTML 3.2 Reference Specification - 1997
Perhaps that's what the World-Wide Web needs. HTML elements which are not in English. There is no technical limitation why we can't have an
<电影> element. Or a CSS property of
British English is the best. But I only think that because it is what I've grown up with. English is the world's most popular second language. But it won't be long before Chinese catches up to the total number of speakers. Is it fair to make new web developers learn an entirely new human language while they struggle with learning a new computer language?
I constantly find myself typing
colour when I mean
color - does a Hindi speaking developer want to be able to program in their preferred language?
Why can't an HTML document start
<!DOCTYPE html ፊደል> and then have all the elements written in Geʽez script?
I know you think this is too hard to achieve. But part of the job of computer scientists is to work out how to make computers do the hard work for us. Humans shouldn't adapt to a computer's needs; the computer must adapt to ours.