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Re: the need for document type name (was: Define a root in a DTD)

At 07:01 1-07-2001, K. Ari Krupnikov wrote:
>What is the need for specifying the document element in an XML document
>declaration? It is my understanding that in SGML elements may be
>omitted, so if the outermost element might be <BODY> but
>tells the processor that HTML is the document element, and that <HTML>,
><HEAD>, <TITLE>, etc. are implicitly present.
>In XML, elements cannot be omitted, so looking at the document element
>should be sufficient. So is the requirement for a document declaration
>name simply for compatibility with SGML, or is there another reason?

You're absolutely right that it's redundant.  It's mostly for 
compatibility; that token in the DOCTYPE is required by SGML, so XML 
couldn't just throw it out.  It is also used by some editing tools to know 
where in the DTD to start, so it's useful that way.  And you can omit the 
DOCTYPE altogether; it's only if it's present that the redundant root 
element identification must be present.

Christopher R. Maden, XML Consultant
DTDs/schemas - conversion - ebooks - publishing - Web - B2B - training
<URL: http://crism.maden.org/consulting/ >
PGP Fingerprint: BBA6 4085 DED0 E176 D6D4  5DFC AC52 F825 AFEC 58DA