You wrote:

> I don't know, Max, I interpret "role" more narrowly than that. The spec 
> indicates that "role" is meant to assist alternate renderers.

I agree, although I think that it is the simplest solution to this
problem. Of course the best way would be, as suggested, to have
metadata in the file, using a different namespace (possibly RDF).

If you're looking for typed values (like date in the original
question) maybe you want schema support in XSLT. Support for schema
simple types is on the requirement list for XSLT 2.0.

> Here we are talking about identifying XML elements so that an XSLT 
> transformation can do some work on them; so this all should happen prior to 
> formatting and ought not be handled by using XSL-FO. IMO. 

The role attribute is in the FO file prior to formatting, so you can
write an XSLT transformation that will process the FO file(s).

Max.


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