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Re: "Binary XML" proposals

On Tue, 10 Apr 2001, David Brownell wrote:

> Binary formats are bad because they tend towards
> being proprietary, and that's the last thing that should
> happen to the world's next "intellectual commons".

PNG! ext2fs! ZIP! gzip! JPEG! tar! TCP/IP!

Put it this way, the existence of image and archive files tells us there's
a need for binary data formats (try encoding a bitmap in XML... go
on... and I don't mean Base64ing a PNG file!). Wouldn't it be nice if the
XML world could be extended to be able to cover these things?

As it stands, PNG and JPEG and so on all have their own internal
mechanisms for seperating image metadata from compressed data and stuff -
ways of compartmentalising data in the files. Wouldn't it be nice to have
a standard way of storing that data? Even if the raw image data itself
(IDAT chunks in PNG) is sent as a single binary string, embedding that
single binary string in a textual XML file containing the metadata
(comments, descriptions of the encoding parameters used, the palette,
etc) is currently not particularly feasible. A binary XML format would be
able to handle embedded binary strings nicely. SVG could be complemented
with SRG - Structured Raster Graphics, containing repackaged PNG data
streams or something.

Is this such a bad thing?

> - Dave


                               Alaric B. Snell
 http://www.alaric-snell.com/  http://RFC.net/  http://www.warhead.org.uk/
   Any sufficiently advanced technology can be emulated in software