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- From: David Megginson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- To: <email@example.com>
- Date: Thu, 2 Apr 1998 14:29:05 -0500
W. Eliot Kimber writes:
> That's probably because the architecture facility of ISO/IEC 10744
> doesn't *do* inheritance in the way that most people seem to
> expect. It lets you define hierarchies of semantic derivation, that
> is "this element is derived from type X defined by architecture
> Y". It provides a way to validate elements derived from type X
> against the DTD rules defined by architecture Y. But that's
> it. It's completely passive and declarative.
Or, to put it more simply, architectural forms let you say that "Y is
a kind of X", while namespaces let you say nothing but "here's X".
(Read on only if you're interested in the implications of this
First, imagine that "X" is an English name, while "Y" is a Korean
name. If the Korean author is using a Korean DTD to write Korean
documents, why should we force her to use element types with English
names just because a namespace happens to have been created in, say,
the Silicon Valley?
Secondly, what if Y is both a kind of X _and_ a kind of Z?
Finally, what if both W _and_ Y are a kind of Z?
Namespaces seem simple at first, and they are a reasonable solution
for some very specific problems, but they fail entirely in the first
two situations, and require an awkward work-around in the third (using
two or more different namespace declarations and prefixes with the
All the best,
David Megginson firstname.lastname@example.org
Microstar Software Ltd. email@example.com
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