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   Re: XML complexity, namespaces (was WG)

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  • From: David Megginson <david@megginson.com>
  • To: "XML Developers' List" <xml-dev@ic.ac.uk>
  • Date: Mon, 22 Mar 1999 20:45:53 -0500 (EST)

Marcus Carr writes:

 > There is what I believe to be a misconception amonst some portions
 > of the XML community that XML and SGML are locked in some sort of
 > competition, but I don't see any of the same feeling from the SGML
 > community. The conclusion that I draw from this is that there is
 > some sort of insecurity, perhaps due to the fact that XML feels
 > that it must replace SGML in order to ensure its survival.  The
 > SGML community sees XML as a great boon - a truly sweet way of
 > using the data and realising the long-term effort that they have
 > put into their datasets.

XML does nothing that SGML cannot do.

SGML does nothing that XML cannot do.

There are some differences in the ways that XML and SGML accomplish
the same thing, but those differences are trival and unimportant from
an architectural perspective.

XML benefited from (at the time) 12 years of SGML industry experience
by eliminating a lot of original SGML features (such as the ability to
vary the delimiter set or to omit tags) that turned out to be
obfuscatory design mistakes.

SGML benefits from 13 years of industry experience in the form of a
small base of stable, production-quality COTS and OSS.

The question, however, is whether there is a real benefit to
supporting two slightly-variant standards that, in the view of a
system architect, accomplish exactly the same thing in pretty much the
same way.

All the best,


David Megginson                 david@megginson.com

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