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- From: Danny Vint <email@example.com>
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Date: Sat, 14 Oct 2000 22:05:14 -0700
At 09:34 PM 10/14/2000 -0400, you wrote:
>But the other outstanding success of the W3C is of a completely
>different character. That's XML. The spec is brilliant (it's *short*!
>You can read and understand it! And the content provides truly
>enormous power). Initially positioned as a resolution of the problems
>and shortcomings of HTML (so I first learned of it, at least), it has
>turned out to have deep-reaching implications that have not yet been
>In fact, the XML standard, for the first time (insofar as my knowledge
>of W3C goes) created a situation in which the vendors were scrambling
>to catch up, giving W3C time to produce additional thoughtful things
>like XSLT/XPath and SVG.
Ah, but you are forgetting the 10 years of use and implementation around
SGML that happened under the influence and control of the ISO. XML didn't
come out of a vacuum, the working group moved so quickly because it was
made up of a group of SGML and HTML users who had been working in this area
for a number of years and there goal (as stated in the first pages of the
spec) were to make it a simpler combination of the two worlds that existed
and provided the benefits that both these worlds had.
This lightening speed that created the XML spec, has probably created an
illusion that is hard to maintain in the various other XML based working
groups that busily crafting the rest of the environment (or redoing it like
I think maybe that Namespaces tried to maintain this illusion and produced
something fast, but now a lot of people question and are confused with once
you get past the "provided a qualified/unique name" aspect of that spec.
The only other W3C spec that I think fits this XML mold is XLST that
somewhat owes its history to DSSSL and Jade and then James Clarks
implementing an XSLT processor as they worked. Everything else in the W3C
other than DOM has been bogged down and taking forever. These
specifications show the reality of working groups and standards
development. It is long, complicated and full of compromises when it is
trying to break new ground.
A non-W3C effort that has been miraculous has been SAX and SAX-2. Working
from a defined set of requirements and building a reference implementation
while developing the spec (and not having that rigidly in concrete while
developing them) has helped greatly. This is another area where a good
champion/interested party has made this process a success - thanks David.
just trying to set the perspective ...
Author: "SGML at Work"