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   Re: NOTE: Stylesheets and XML

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  • From: "Simon St.Laurent" <SimonStL@classic.msn.com>
  • To: "Xml-Dev (E-mail)" <xml-dev@ic.ac.uk>
  • Date: Sun, 10 May 98 01:17:30 UT

Jon Bosak wrote:
>At the request of the W3C XML WG, James Clark has put into the form of
>a Note a proposal made some time ago for a simple method for
>associating stylesheets with XML documents.  This method closely
>parallels the mechanism used for the same purpose in HTML 4.0.  It is
>not an official recommendation, but the proposal has already been
>successfully implemented and should serve well for the first
>experiments with XML/CSS browsers.  See
>   http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-xml-stylesheet

After taking a look at the note, I have a concern.

The note proposes
<?xml:stylesheet href="mystyle.css" type="text/css">

as the equivalent for the HTML

<LINK href="mystyle.css" rel="stylesheet" type="type/css">

(There are, of course, many more examples...)

The same information, for the most part, is contained in both statements, and 
a processing instruction ducks the issues raised by using an element to 
implement the link.  Still, I'm wondering if XML isn't already becoming loaded 
down with different ways to reference external material.

External entities provide one mechanism for including material. The DOCTYPE 
declaration provides another mechanism.  This processing instruction is yet 
another mechanism.  XLink provides another set of mechanisms which at least 
'transclude' information if not 'include' it.  

I realize that these things are are connecting material of different types in 
different contexts, but it seems too many mechanisms are providing similar 
functionality in different contexts.

I'm definitely _not_ saying that this way of implementing stylesheets is a bad 
idea - it's probably the most convenient way to do it in many circumstances.  
I'm hoping strongly that we don't find any other needs that require another 
reference of a different type.

Simon St.Laurent
Dynamic HTML: A Primer / XML: A Primer / Cookies

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