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RE: best markup practices, different communities
- From: "Bullard, Claude L (Len)" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- To: "Simon St.Laurent" <email@example.com>,XML-Dev Mailing list <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Wed, 07 Feb 2001 09:46:26 -0600
To reiterate an old point, Simon: the problem was not adopting SGML,
it was adopting The SGML Way.
The Tower of Babel was sellable as a
project because everyone shared a single
language (community) and means to choose (king/practice).
After it fell, they had multiple means to
choose (kings and communities) among means.
They were sometimes confused in the marketplace,
but each in their own market, more prosperous.
1. Registration of schemas is control of
resource definitions, not control of the
application or choice of resources. It protects
but does not govern.
2. The big schema projects are only as useful
as the users commit to their observable use.
In many cases, it would be better to design
different languages AND the means to negotiate
aggregates (sort of what I thought RDF and Topic
Maps are good for).
3. Tools have to enable merging and detection
of conflict. The ontologists have spelled all
this out in detail.
4. Discovery based negotiations work better
aka, bootstrapping meaning, where the communicative
a priori is not yet realized. Even then, verify
5. The means to choose the means is the essence of
decentralization. Resources are more efficiently
applied and controlled by decentralized systems.
We lose too much energy trying to force it all
to one design. Again, the lesson of HTML is that
it starts the discourse but cannot be the control
for all designs. Gencoding ultimately fails to
control all systems efficiently.
That is why generalized markup was invented some three
decades ago. That is why the XML modifications
to markup design improve its use on the media (the web)
but have not altered the fundamentals of practiced
application. Study the history to invent the future.
When the 'generalized' was dropped in favor of 'extensible'
an important lesson was forgotten.
Ekam sat.h, Vipraah bahudhaa vadanti.
Daamyata. Datta. Dayadhvam.h
From: Simon St.Laurent [mailto:email@example.com]
What I am worried about is a lot of the best practices that inform the
creation of XML standards and XML documents. The large-scale publishing
experience that informs what I typically refer to as 'XML best practices'
doesn't seem an appropriate influence on other applications of markup.