abstract – An attribute of an element to indicate that the element is only used in a hierarchy to group related elements together. An abstract element cannot be used to tag data in an instance document. In the XBRL US GAAP Taxonomy, every element that has calculation children also has a corresponding abstract element.
ASCII character – Technical term preparers may see in warning messages; the characters are only English letters, digits, and common punctuation marks. ASCII stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange, and omits commonly used formatting characters forward- and backward-tilted apostrophes and double quotes, non-breaking spaces, and bullets.
authoritative reference – Citations to specific authoritative accounting literature (pronouncements, standards, rules, and regulations) derived from various authoritative sources (SEC, FASB, and AICPA) and used to help define an element.
axis (pl. axes) – An instance document contains facts; an axis differentiates facts and each axis represents a way that the facts may be classified. For example, Revenue for a period might be reported along a business unit axis, a country axis, a product axis, and so forth.
balance – An attribute of a monetary item type designated as debit, credit, or neither; a designation, if any, should be the natural or most expected balance of the element—"credit" or "debit"—and thus indicates how calculation relationships involving the element may be assigned a weight attribute (-1 or +1).
calculation relationships – Additive relationships between numeric items expressed as parent-child hierarchies. Each calculation child has a weight attribute (+1 or -1) based upon its natural balance of the parent and child items.
calculation relationships file – A file containing only calculation relationships. An extension taxonomy will typically have at least one calculation relationships file.
camel case – The phrase "Net Change in Assets" becomes "NetChangeInAssets" in camel case. When software requires preparers to provide a name containing no spaces, and changing an English phrase into the symbol makes it hard to read, use camel case. Contrasted with either lower case or upper case, camel case uses capitalization of each word in the phrase to create visual "humps". Punctuation is always removed. Even an acronym occurring in a phrase also should be converted to camel case (for example, "US GAAP Report" becomes "UsGaapReport").
concept – XBRL technical term for element.
decimal – Instance document fact attribute used to express the number of decimal places to which numbers have been rounded.
definition relationships file – Technical term for dimensional relationships file.
dimensional relationships file – XBRL relationships file used to define dimensional relationships between elements. The XBRL technical name for this file is a definition relationships file.
domain – An element that represents an entire set of other elements; the domain and its members are used to classify facts along the axis of a table. For example, "Arkansas" is a domain member in the domain "States", and would be used to classify elements such as revenues and assets in Arkansas as distinct from other states. When a fact does not have any domain member specified, that means it applies to the entire domain.
domain member – An element representing one of the possibilities within a domain.
element – XBRL components (items, domain members, dimensions, and so forth). The representation of a financial reporting concept, including: line items in the face of the financial statements, important narrative disclosures, and rows and columns in tables.
element definition – A human-readable description of a reporting concept. From an XBRL technical point of view, the element definition is the label with the type "documentation", and there are label relationships in a label relationships file, but from a user point of view the definition is an unchangeable attribute of the element.
extended link – XBRL technical term for a relationship group.
extension taxonomy or extension – A taxonomy that allows users to add to a published taxonomy in order to define new elements or change element relationships and attributes (presentation, calculation, labels, and so forth) without altering the original.
FRTA – Financial Reporting Taxonomies Architecture; guides the creation and use of taxonomies by presenting a recommended design architecture as well as rules and conventions for taxonomies and instance documents.
GAAP – Generally Accepted Accounting Principles as defined in AICPA, Professional Standards, vol. 1, AU sec. 411 and PCAOB Standards and Related Rules, AU sec 411, and Evaluating Consistency of Financial Statements, AS 6.
hypercube – XBRL technical term for a table.
imputed value – A value that is not specifically provided but could be calculated based on other provided numbers and calculation weights.
instance or instance document – XML file that contains business reporting information and represents a collection of financial facts and report-specific information using tags from one or more XBRL taxonomies.
integer – A data type indicating that the element is stated in whole numbers.
item – XBRL technical term for a kind of element.
label type – A distinguishing name for each distinct element indicating the circumstances in which it should be used; each is given a separate defining "role" to use in different presentation situations.
line item – Elements that conventionally appear on the vertical axis (rows) of a table.
namespace – Every element has a Universal Resource Identifier (URI) that identifies the organization that maintains the element definitions, with an indication of what the term covers. In the XBRL US GAAP Taxonomy, namespaces start with "http://xbrl.us/us-gaap/". A namespace prefix is not the namespace.
negating label – A label type that causes numeric values of an element to be displayed with their sign flipped.
nillable – An attribute that appears on all taxonomy elements, and is used (false) on elements that, if used in an instance document, must have a non-empty value. XBRL taxonomy tools normally have the default value for nillable as "true". There is no need for any extension to define an element with nillable "false".
non-GAAP – As used in this guide and the XBRL US GAAP Taxonomies v1.0, this term applies to the taxonomies of non-financial information; it does not mean "non-GAAP" in the sense of Regulation S-K Item 10(e).
parent-child hierarchy – Relationship between elements that indicates subordination of one to the other as represented in a print listing or financial statement presentation. Relationships files use parent-child hierarchies to model several different relationships, including presentation, summation of a set of facts, and membership of concepts within a domain used as the axis of a table.
presentation relationships file – Defines the organizational relationships (order) of elements using parent-child hierarchies; it presents the taxonomy elements to users and allows them to navigate the content.
relationship group description – A human-readable name for a relationship group, specifically used for sorting. For example, "148600 – Statement – Statement of Income" is the name of a relationship group that begins with a number so that it can be sorted easily.
relationship group role or relationship group name – A unique identifier, resembling a namespace, that is shared by related calculation, presentation, and dimension relationships all used together. For example, http://xbrl.us/us-gaap/role/statement/StatementOfIncome is a relationship group role.
relationships file – Part of a taxonomy used to define specific relationships and other data about elements. There are five standard relationships file types: Presentation, Calculation, Definition (Dimensions), Label, and Reference.
root – The top level of a tree; can appear only once in that tree.
scaling – A process that automatically scales numeric data by value, thus saving time of entering zeros during the entry or creation process. XBRL does not support the scaling of numeric values (all values must be reported in their entirety); however, it is a feature commonly found in instance document creation software.
scenario – Tag that allows for additional information to be associated with facts in an instance document; this information encompasses in particular the reporting circumstances of the fact, as for example "actual" or "forecast". The scenario of any fact can be left unspecified.
schema – Technical term for an element declaration file.
segment – Tag that allows additional information to be included in the context of an instance document; this information captures segment information such as an entity's business units, type of debt, type of other income, and so forth.
sign value – Denotes whether a numeric fact in an instance has a positive (+) or negative (-) value.
suppress (a relationship) – An extension effectively can remove a parent-child relationship in a presentation, calculation, or dimension relationship. It is not actually deleted from the XBRL US GAAP Taxonomy, just made ineffectual. The technical term is "prohibiting the arc".
table – An element that organizes a set of axes and a set of line items so as to indicate that each fact of one of the line items could be further characterized along one or more of its axes. For example, if a line item is "Sales" and an axis is "Scenario" this means that an instance document could have facts that are either for an "unspecified scenario" or for a specific scenario such as "actual" or "forecast".
table-axis relationship – Dimensional relationship indicating that a table uses a particular axis. The XBRL technical name for this is the "hypercube-dimension" relationship; software tools may provide other names.
tag (noun) – Markup information that describes a unit of data in an instance document and encloses it in angle brackets ("<>" and "</>"). All facts in an instance document are enclosed by tags that identify the element of the fact.
tag (verb) – To apply markup to an instance document.
target namespace – The namespace for which an element names file defines elements. The uniqueness of the target namespace prevents element name collisions between the various element names files, assisting taxonomy users to recognize the restrictions between the original element names files and extension element names files.
taxonomy, taxonomies – Electronic dictionary of business reporting elements used to report business data. A taxonomy is composed of an element names file (.xsd) and relationships files directly referenced by that schema. The taxonomy schema files plus the relationships files define the concepts (elements) and relationships that form the basis of the taxonomy. The set of related schemas and relationships files altogether constitute a taxonomy.
tuple – Tuples are not used in the XBRL US GAAP Taxonomies v1.0, and best practice is not to use them in any extension. Tuples may be mentioned in software applications to ensure backward compatibility with previously created instance documents. The functionality previously addressed with tuples has been replaced with tables.
unit of measure – The units in which numeric items have been measured, such as dollars, shares, Euros, or dollars per share.
weight – Calculation relationship attribute (-1 or +1) that works in conjunction with the balance of the parent and child numeric elements to determine the arithmetic summation relationship between them. A parent with a balance credit that has two children, one with a balance type debit and the other with a balance type credit, would, in an XBRL calculation relationships file, have the parent with a weight of +1, the debit child with a weight of -1, and the credit child with a weight of +1. As can be seen, the parent's balance drives the weight of the children addends.
XBRL footnote – An instance document element that provides additional information for specified values by creating linkages between them and a footnote element containing this additional information.
XBRL specification – Detailed description of XML syntax, semantics, and structures, and so forth that prescribe how XBRL is constructed. The current Specification 2.1 is used primarily by IT professionals in developing tools and software for XBRL applications.
XBRL table – A table.
XML – Stands for Extensible Markup Language, which is used to describe and define data by allowing users to define their own tags (in contrast to HTML where the tags are predefined). XBRL is an XML- based standard.