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   Re: XSet, an XML Property Set, was: re: Why the Infoset?

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  • From: "Simon St.Laurent" <simonstl@simonstl.com>
  • To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
  • Date: Mon, 07 Aug 2000 18:33:11 -0400

At 10:52 AM 8/7/00 -0500, Steven R. Newcomb wrote:
>[Simon St. Laurent:]
>> I suspect that using [an ISO-conforming Property Set] to define an
>> Infoset for XML would be great for [the public's awareness of the
>> grove paradigm], but I'm not sure it would
>> do anything good for XML.
>It would be very, very good for XML, because then XML documents would
>be far more quickly recognized as the standard way to address, use,
>and apply arbitrary semantics to *everything*, not just to other XML
>documents.  Groves are all about addressing, and particularly about
>making sure that addresses, as expressed, are not technology dependent
>and therefore can't lose their value on account of software product
>differentiation and evolution.

But groves aren't just about addressing within XML documents - they're
about any type of document.  The big win would be for groves, which would
have been able to ride along on the XML hype wave.  As tools for addressing
XML documents _as groves_ emerged, tools for addressing other formats _as
groves_ would have benefited.  I still don't see that building XML on the
grove paradigm does anything for _XML_.

>It's really self-defeating for XML to provide an addressing paradigm
>for itself that can't be applied to everything else.  Groves are the
>only universal paradigm there is, and, mirabile dictu, the grove
>paradigm and all of the necessary interchange syntax (i.e., the
>property set DTD) also happens to be an ISO standard.

It's only self-defeating if you really want XML to provide an addressing
paradigm for _all information_.  I don't actually want or need a "universal

>Experts agree that there is nothing in the grove paradigm that is
>unnecessary, although some have had to be beaten severely before they
>could see that this is the case (;^).  The grove paradigm is also
>demonstrably sufficient for the purpose of making everything
>addressable in any convenient terms.

And if I wanted "everything addressable" I'd be interested - but I don't.
I just want XML addressable.  Maybe someday I'll want _everything_
addressable, but for right now, that involves way more overhead, mental and
otherwise, than I'm willing to accept.

Simon St.Laurent
XML Elements of Style / XML: A Primer, 2nd Ed.
http://www.simonstl.com - XML essays and books


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