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RE: XML 1.0 is simple. was: RE: almost four years ago....

I agree, but the problem is, was that the question 
being asked?  XML 1.0 remains a simple well-formed 
file and an optional DTD.  The rest is applications 
of that then used in a system to work with the system 
components (editors, parsers, validators, link managers, 
inference engines, protocol engines, scripting engines, 
transform engines and so forth).  So one can say one has mastered XML 
and be about as apt as having learned to write 


and the claim is almost as vacuous.  That bit of buffoonery 
where we throw a twenty page spec to the floor and 
announce a miracle while turning our backs to the 
horned animal waiting to charge only hurts us.  It 
gets us articles like the one from Kendall that have 
to de-mythologize that miracle and say, "well, we had 
to sell it first."  It's true but caveat emptor becomes 
caveat vendor rather quickly.

So the honest answer is, no. XML is not easy to learn, 
no XML is not simpler than SGML, no we did not make 
anyone's job simpler except for the individual writing 
the parser and since so few do that, the benefits are 
nil.  The only benefit is that SGML is now in use on 
the web in a subset form and that is a real benefit 
over the endless and incompatible extensions to HTML.

In short, we cleaned up the mess we knew we had to 
clean up after the last round of rhetoric about simplicity, 
"shining moments of clarity" and all the other BS that 
was filling the stable. 

What the XMLers have to accept is that it refills every 
night and the river has to keep flowing through it 
every day to keep it clean.  The job is Herculean. 


Ekam sat.h, Vipraah bahudhaa vadanti.
Daamyata. Datta. Dayadhvam.h

-----Original Message-----
From: Jonathan Borden [mailto:jborden@mediaone.net]

> XML 1.0 is.

This is the key point. Here is XML -- XML is itself simple. It _enables_ you
to be simple, but if you want to be complicated, go ahead.

Perhaps we should stop talking about the family of specs surrounding XML as
if they _are_ XML itself. That is to say, defining "XML in totality" is akin
to defining binary logic (simple) and defining the latest multiGHz Pentium
IV with a gazillion gates _as_ part of "binary logic in totality".