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   Re: Whitespace rules (v2)

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  • From: Tim Bray <tbray@textuality.com>
  • To: xml-dev@ic.ac.uk
  • Date: Sat, 16 Aug 1997 10:56:54 -0700

I gotta say that it's noble of you guys to take aim at this particular
problem, but you should bear in mind that it's really really really 
hard.  The original goal as stated in SGML was to ignore white
space "caused by markup" by which they meant "used to prettyprint
markup".  A worthy goal, but in fact most people would agree that
the rules you have to write to achieve this are horrendously complicated
and some would argue that SGML never actually did get it right.  

We spent a huge amount of time on this in the XML committee and 
eventually decided that if simple rules could be written, we weren't
smart enough to figure them out.

So good luck, don't expect it to be easy, but if you get it right
the world will be grateful. -Tim

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