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   Re: Options in XML 1.0

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  • From: Jonathan Borden <jborden@mediaone.net>
  • To: "Simon St.Laurent" <simonstl@simonstl.com>, xml-dev@lists.xml.org
  • Date: Fri, 10 Nov 2000 13:40:35 -0500

Simon St.Laurent wrote:

> At 12:56 PM 11/10/00 -0500, Jonathan Borden wrote:
> >Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on your perspective, XML 1.0 is
> >already specified and has been so for some time now. Like it or not DTDs
> >a part of XML 1.0. Perhaps not XML 2.0, but I am not writing standards
> >specify XML 2.0 yet, and until I can compare (the theoretical) XML 2.0
> >against the current XML 1.0 specification I can't make that distinction.
> Yes, XML is already specified, and has been for over two years.  I'd like
> to suggest that we've learned something over those two years.
> David Megginson once said that he hoped successive XML specs would get
> smaller and smaller.  That doesn't seem to be the case, but one might

    Agreed! But my concern is that the proposed XML Schema spec is much more
complex than XML 1.0 itself including DTDs. So, I don't grok how suggesting
that we drop DTDs is going to solve any problem in this regards.

> If you have control over which parsers are used to read your documents,
> it's not a problem.  If, however, you don't, it is a problem, and not one
> easily solved.

    I agree wholeheartedly but would rather change the spec to require that
any XML document which contains a DOCTYPE decl be required to read both the
internal and external subset.

> I wasn't discussing naming here. In fact I'm questioning the wisdom of XML
> 1.0 itself here, not proposing an alternative.

    Questioning wisdom is easy to do unless you propose an alternative. The
term "armchair quarterback" comes to mind. I'm willing to listen to proposed
fixes to the true problem you are discussing (wasn't this the crux of the
"Between Raw and Cooked" thread?) But, if your proposed fix trashes my
current and planned implementations I am going to either loudly complain,
mandate XML 1.0 (i.e. not accept your solution), or both.

    That being said I would no more wish to require someone to use a DTD
than I would wish to require someone to use an XML Schema, and part of the
wisdom of XML 1.0 is that it requires neither. I'm not so worried that
Common XML wishes not to use DTDs as I am that future incarnations of W3C
XML attempt to deprecate DTDs over XML Schemas.

Jonathan Borden
The Open Healthcare Group


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