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   Re: [xml-dev] Attribute Order

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At 3:52 PM -0500 12/8/01, Simon St.Laurent wrote:

>It's part of XML 1.0's Second Edition, not the original.

It's not explicitly stated in the XML 1.0 first edition spec, but it 
is most definitely part of XML 1.0 first edition, and always was, 
because this is a characteristic XML inherits from SGML. The second 
edition spec is just a lot clearer on this point.

>In any event, the specification does not require attributes to be
>scrambled, and I see no reason for most pipeline processing to disrupt
>the original sequence of attributes.  While the order may not "matter",
>people do tend to get in a habit where they'd like to see things come
>through in the order they arrived, and arbitrary disruption of that
>seems pointless at best.

I'm reminded of a Macintosh debugging tool that deliberately 
scrambled the heap after every memory allocation to make sure 
programmers weren't relying on objects staying in one place without 
actively locking them down. If you rely on behavior that is not 
guaranteed, your code will have problems sooner or later. It's 
well-known that the sooner the bug is detected, the cheaper it is to 

| Elliotte Rusty Harold | elharo@metalab.unc.edu | Writer/Programmer |
|          The XML Bible, 2nd Edition (Hungry Minds, 2001)           |
|              http://www.ibiblio.org/xml/books/bible2/              |
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