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   Re: Internal subset equivalent in new schema proposals?

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  • From: Paul Prescod <paul@prescod.net>
  • To: xml-dev@ic.ac.uk
  • Date: Wed, 25 Nov 1998 11:50:17 -0600

Michael Kay wrote:
> This is actually causing me a little anguish at the moment. I've suddenly
> realised that having an external DTD and a validating parser in place gives
> an application no assurances about the structure of the data!

I don't know what this means.

> Another example, I feel, of XML being influenced too much by "document"
> thinking rather than "data" thinking.

Argh. Documents are data. The dichotomy is in your head. Doesn't XML
itself makes this abundantly clear?

> Incidentally we have found people in the media industry very receptive to
> the benefits of a clear separation of responsibilities between the designer
> of a series (e.g. film/movie reviews) and the author of articles/programmes
> within that series. They recognise it as essential to the goal of
> "re-purposing" content. We are starting to use XML to control the
> organization of some areas of the BBC Worldwide site (www.beeb.com) which we
> run, where the disciplines of consistent content structure are now
> well-established, without anyone feeling their creativity is impaired.

Your two-level system is not sufficient to solve the problem in general.
It ignores the level above "series designer." The world is not structured
in terms of content structurers and structure fillers. Take it from a
"document guy": organizational structures are more complicated than that. 

As an object oriented programmer, this pattern is familiar to you:

A program is a kind of document.
A BBC program is a kind of program.
A BBC television program is a kind of BBC program.
A children's television program is a kind of BBC radio program.
The teletubbies are a kind television program.

It should be possible at every level to 

 a) invent new structures within the bounds imposed from above (above is
"more general")

 b) impose structures on those below (below is "more specific")

IOW, every level needs to innovate and set rules. This is why both you and
Don are right, even if you talk past each other.

 Paul Prescod  - ISOGEN Consulting Engineer speaking for only himself.

Christmas shopping in a T-Shirt? Toto, I have a feeling we 
aren't in Canada anymore.

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