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Re: [xml-dev] Interoperability

From: "Tim Bray" <tbray@textuality.com>

> You've pointed out what is a horrible
> problem - the infrastructure has really lousy support for 
> dealing with multiple related resourcse that you need to 
> bring together to do a job.  There are little bits & pieces
> of machinery around: multipart-mime, RDDL, etc.  Interestingly,
> they tried to start a "packaging" activity up over at W3C but
> it expired for lack of interest. 

Almost all of the approaches to packaging I have seen have
one or more of the following flaw:
 1) Aim too high: e.g. SDIF can package all the resources for a document,
    or other formats consider how to handle update of parts
 2) Aim too low: some just give such general requirements that there
    is no concrete way to implement them
 3) Aim at some specific domain: e.g. IMS (which doesn't look bad
     but has no real open source code) for teaching material or
    the ebook formats
  4) Really aim at some different problem: e.g. how to stick everything
     into one big fat XML document or how to handle digital rights.

A month ago I posted this idea (made for inhouse discussion at Allette
Systems in Sydney). It has three characteristics
 1) Low tech and flexible
 2) Only aimed at "document types" or "document type applications"
      (i.e. metadata)  not whole documents
 3) Provides space for integrators to add parts for different platforms  


Rick Jelliffe