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   RE: IDL?

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  • From: David Megginson <ak117@freenet.carleton.ca>
  • To: Andrew Layman <andrewl@microsoft.com>
  • Date: Fri, 26 Dec 1997 07:55:50 -0500

Andrew Layman writes:

 > I have to agree with Paul here.  If the interface is only
 > implementable in a single language, then you've failed.
 > Programmers need to make engineering tradeoffs among a number of
 > factors, and will sometimes very reasonably choose one language
 > over another.  We could expediently pick one language and ignore
 > all others in order to simplify the problem a little, but that
 > would be letting the solution dictate the problem. I don't
 > recommend it, since it would simply mean that the parsers written
 > in other languages would be guaranteed incompatible.

I have no intention of proposing anything that precludes a compiled
language (without runtime type-checking), so if that's the only
barrier, then there is no need for concern.

There _is_ a reason for concern, however, with the goals and scope of
this project.  It will be (I hope) an easy task to design a simple
API, with sample interfaces in Java, but we need to know what kind of
an API we are designing, and why.

For example, when DOM interfaces are available for NXP, Ælfred, and
Lark as well as MSXML, Peter may not need any other common interface
for Jumbo.  If people really want the DOM, then the parser writers
should work on implementing whatever the current draft defines instead
of spending time on the simple interface.  If they still need the
simple event-based interface, then I have to understand what they need
it for:

1) (My suggestion.)  A pre-DOM interface, defining the events returned
   by an XML parser, and providing enough information to build a DOM
   tree (PIs, attributes, elements, data, DOCTYPE declarations, etc.).

2) (Tim's suggestion.)  A post-DOM interface, for people who don't
   want to learn the complexity of the DOM, and providing only the
   minimum possible information (elements, attributes, and data).

Do we need either if these?  If so, which one do we want?

All the best,


David Megginson                 ak117@freenet.carleton.ca
Microstar Software Ltd.         dmeggins@microstar.com

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  • Follow-Ups:
    • RE: IDL?
      • From: Peter Murray-Rust <peter@ursus.demon.co.uk>
  • References:
    • RE: IDL?
      • From: Andrew Layman <andrewl@microsoft.com>


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