OASIS Mailing List ArchivesView the OASIS mailing list archive below
or browse/search using MarkMail.


Help: OASIS Mailing Lists Help | MarkMail Help



   Vocabularies and syntax (was: Does DTD validation work withnamespaces?)

[ Lists Home | Date Index | Thread Index ]
  • From: Amy Lewis <amyzing@talsever.com>
  • To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
  • Date: Wed, 09 Aug 2000 20:22:15 -0400

On Wed, Aug 09, 2000 at 10:49:28AM -0400, Winchel 'Todd' Vincent, III wrote:
>> On Wed, Aug 09, 2000 at 07:41:05AM -0400, Norman Walsh wrote:
>> >/ James Robertson <jamesr@steptwo.com.au> was heard to say:
>> >| Isn't the issue that namespaces allow you
>> >| to mix information from a number of sources,
>> >| however you see fit? Every document can have
>> >| different elements, and yet still be considered
>> >| OK according to well-formed and namespace rules ...
>> >
>> >The only way that I'd consider such a document valid is if the (set of)
>> >DTDs in question all referred to each other. I would expect the content
>> >models of each DTD to specifically allow the mixtures. For example,
>> >a DocBook+MathML DTD might allow:
>> >
>> >  <!ELEMENT equation (alt?, (graphic+|mediaobject+|mml:math+))>
>> >
>> >But to say that you can mix them "willy nilly" violates the principals
>> >of validity at their core.
>> Or could I create a grand-unifying DTD for work in the field of
>> statistical chemistry (say) that, by importing the domain-specific DTDs
>> for mathematics, chemistry, graphics, bibliographies, and general
>> document-oriented text, permitted all of these elements, in some
>> specified (to whatever degree of specificity) order?
>Within a "Legal" set of namespaces, (Court Filing, Contract, Transcript), if
>the same legal industry consortium defines the namespaces, then they
>*should* work together as Norman suggests.
>However, I agree with Amy and disagree with Norman in the following respect
>. . . Suppose there is a Contract DTD (defined by a legal industry
>consortium) that defines contract clauses and a contract vocabulary.
>Amazon.com or some other e-commerce site wishes to mix elements from the
>Contract DTD into their website mark-up, or an Amazon invoice, or standard
>prospectus mark-up with an independently created DTD defined by some other
>organization, or anything else that the legal industry consortium does not
>know about (and did not consider when it created Contract DTD), then this
>would be perfectly *appropriate* and, indeed, exactly what the goal should

Sorry to allow the above to be so verbose, but it does provide context

Is what we are proposing here something on the order of a decoupling
(partial, not complete) of vocabulary from syntax?  The two together
provide a semantic, but some of that semantic can be provided by
vocabulary alone.

So, for instance, the SVG or MathML folks might *deliberately* design
things in such a manner that a subset can be easily imported.  Then a
higher-level schema can do the importing (via PEs for DTD, or ?? for
schema languages).  With DTDs, would this require nearly full
modularization?  That is, every element that ought to be a "vocable" (I
wonder if that's a neologism, an archaism, or a malapropism ...) needs
to be placed into a separate DTD, then imported into the overall
domain-specific DTD independently?  And would something similar also be
required for schemas?  It would be nice if one could extract the global
declarations from a schema, and say "I want these three, but not those
four over there".  In fact, if this were possible, some domains might
even create schemas that specify the particles, the vocabulary only,
leaving the construction of the specific content model to someone else
(example: define a vocabulary for ordering, billing, and shipping, but
let the content (the order of elements and to some degree their
containment; at least the containment of all the imported elements) be
defined by trading partners).

Or am I misunderstanding?  It seems to me that doing this would be a
rather powerful means of using XML, within larger subject areas
(bibliographers and librarians tend to use much the same vocabulary ...
but the way that they use the vocabulary differs, because they have
different needs (the vocabulary does also differ in details)).

Amelia A. Lewis          alicorn@mindspring.com          amyzing@talsever.com
I stopped by the bar at 3 a.m. to seek solace in a bottle, or possibly a
friend.  I woke up with a headache like my head against a board, twice as
cloudy as I'd been the night before.  I went in seeking clarity.
		-- Indigo Girls


News | XML in Industry | Calendar | XML Registry
Marketplace | Resources | MyXML.org | Sponsors | Privacy Statement

Copyright 2001 XML.org. This site is hosted by OASIS