Ah, here we are coming to some of the finer points of HTML markup: e.g. DokuWiki's
** markup generates
<strong> (“strong emphasis”) and not
<b> (“bring attention to” - or as we used to call it: “bold”). These may look the same, but they have different semantic meanings, and can be rendered in different ways on different media – e.g. a screen reader would give
<strong> a strong emphasis, but read over
<b> just like normal text.
Maybe an even better example is
<del> which is intended to indicate that something has been deleted – this would be ideal for the diff view in the version history (where, unfortunately, DokuWiki uses the un-semantic
<strong class="diff-mark">instead), but I can't think of many use-cases for this tag inside of an article ... on the other hand, I am using
<s> quite extensively, in order to indicate that something is not correct (e.g. an invalid conclusion).
But there is more to it: with DokuWiki code, I have no means of adding attributes, e.g. to indicate a different language. Maybe the best use case for the
<i>-tag is indeed a change of idiom, as in
<i :fr>L’État, c’est moi !</i>, which should of course not indicate a change in emphasis, but mark a change in language (again, a screen reader may change voices in this situation).
This is also why I integrated the
<span>tag: I am using this a lot, where the more specialized tags are not suitable (for example, non-Latin languages should not be italicised:
<span :grc>ἐνθύμημα</span>). However, because of the conflict with Wrap, this was also the first that got the option to be disabled (and is still disabled by default).
So to conclude, you are of course right: these are specialised forms of existing tags, and the casual wiki-writer may have little use for them. For the advanced author, however, these are important enough to warrant such a plugin.
Now I just need to add the block-level elements as well :-)