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   RE: [xml-dev] Attribute Order

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> -----Original Message-----
> From: Elliotte Rusty Harold [mailto:elharo@metalab.unc.edu]
> Sent: Saturday, December 08, 2001 3:36 PM
> To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
> Subject: Re: [xml-dev] Attribute Order
> 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.

Someone (Tim Bray?) explained this once as a simple oversight; the notion
that attributes have no defined order was so deeply embedded in SGML culture
that nobody noticed it wasn't explicitly stated in XML.  So in a sense it
was always in XML, but it was't at all explicit until the second edition.  

I'd guess this discussion has the predictable conclusion: be liberal in what
you accept, and conservative in what you produce.  Work to find and fix code
that makes assumptions about attribute order, but don't change attribute
order if at all possible in case a downstream application -- perhaps written
by a non-SGML veteran to a literal reading  of the original XML spec --


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