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   Re: Foreign Names

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  • From: Peter Murray-Rust <peter@ursus.demon.co.uk>
  • To: xml-dev@xml.org
  • Date: Wed, 26 Apr 2000 08:23:22 +0100

At 08:39 PM 4/25/00 -0500, Steven R. Newcomb wrote:
>It is still unknown how namespaces will actually support industrial
>communications, except where proprietary software determines, in a
>proprietary way, what constitutes syntactic conformance to the
>syntactic requirements of multiple independently-designed namespaces
>in the same document.  More: it's still impossible to make a single
>element be recognized as presumably conformant to a name in more than
>one namespace.  Namespaces are still a paradigm that requires that
>there be a single monopolistic software vendor for each namespace.

I don't accept that this is required! Several DTDs and related namespaces
that have been  developed by the W3C (MathML, SVG) seem to have multiple
implementations and are not monopolistic. In developing Chemical Markup
Language I am absolutely adamant that there should not be any software
monopoly, either by myself or another vendor. That is why I see
organisations like international scientific unions, learned societies,
professional bodies, industry consortia, and OASIS as critical.

Our biggest problem is that the *implementation* of namespaces is likely to
be vendor-dependent. That is in part because the specifications do not
address this problem and it is left to a variety of groups (including
XML-DEV) to tackle this and to try to provide open ways forward.

Of course it is possible that in some areas the culture and complexity of
the problem make true interoperability impossible. But I hope that XML-DEV
sees this as a challenge and an area where progress is possible, however
difficult. I think it is one of the key reasons why this list should
continue to prosper.

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