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RE: "Uh, what do I need this for" (was RE: XML.COM: How I Learne d to Love daBomb)

I'd cite another example -- like that Blueberry debate that raged a short
while ago. One thing you can clearly see is that the issues around
identifying a character are far more complex than the casual observer might
realize, especially when you need to correctly identify a name character or
white space character. So how much must the typical XML developer concern
themselves with these issues? Should we be telling anyone who wants to work
with XML that they should first familiarize themselves with the intricacies
of Unicode surrogate pairs?

Most XML developers don't concern themselves with such issues. They trust
their XML parser to deal with these issues and choose to deal with things on
a higher plane. If XML cannot enable them to do so, then the value of XML is
substantially undermined. So now take the business developer who is
accustomed to writing applications that deal with PurchaseOrders, Invoices,
InventoryItems. Why should we tell such developers that they should be
modeling all of their data in a DOM (or JDOM structures, or stream of SAX
events)? That doesn't make sense. It provides absolutely no business value,
and indeed would simply hinder productivity, lead to less robust software,
and all just to familiarize the developer with the technical details of some
XML APIs and technologies?

There will always be some developers who will need to deal with these
details, just as their are some developers who need to write code to deal
with Unicode surrogate pairs. But those trying to solve business problems
rarely have any use for this stuff, and telling them otherwise seems to me
to be just promoting technology for technology's sake. XML is useful to them
for data interchange, but at the API level it just gets in the way.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Simon St.Laurent [mailto:simonstl@simonstl.com]
> Sent: Tuesday, August 21, 2001 2:32 PM
> To: Michael Brennan
> Cc: xml-dev
> Subject: RE: "Uh, what do I need this for" (was RE: XML.COM: How I
> Learne d t o Love daBomb)
> On 20 Aug 2001 19:01:53 -0700, Michael Brennan wrote:
> > That's what's driving WSDL. As web services mature, very 
> few programmers
> > using web services tools will be dealing with XML APIs 
> (unless they want
> > to).
> For an alternate view of the universe, take a look at:
> http://java.oreilly.com/news/javaxml_0801.html
> It's worth remembering that higher-level abstractions have their own
> costs.
> Simon St.Laurent