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   RE: [xml-dev] The use of XML syntax in XML Query

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> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jonathan Robie [mailto:jonathan.robie@softwareag.com]
> Sent: Thursday, January 03, 2002 12:03 PM
> To: Elliotte Rusty Harold; ht@cogsci.ed.ac.uk; David Carlisle
> Cc: www-xml-query-comments@w3.org; xml-dev@lists.xml.org
> Subject: Re: [xml-dev] The use of XML syntax in XML Query
> >I  think XQueryX 
> >could be redone in a more user-friendly form if that were desired.
> But doing this would require major new work, and would set back the 
> schedule for XQuery 1.0 significantly. Especially since the resulting 
> syntax would be syntactically similar to XSLT, but would have to be 
> different because of the optimizability and type-safety goals 
> of XQuery. 

The schedule and the sorting out of the relationship between XQuery and XSLT
are essentially organizational objectives that are more or less irrelevant
to the larger community of XML users.  I [personally] would urge the
XSLT/XQuery groups to: 

- Make sure that XPath 2.0 is as "clean" as possible, with features mainly
used by XQuery or XSLT kept in the appropriate layers.  This may be stating
the obvious.   

- Make the release of XPath 2.0 the highest priority; there is an immediate
need for the additional features that it offers over XPath 1.0 in the XML
database world.

- Consider an XUpdate or whatever on top of XPath 2.0 as a the next highest
priority, split it out from XQuery if that helps get it out faster.
Alternatively, graciously cooperate with some non-W3C activity to define an
XUpdate language cleanly layered on XPath 2.0 if the W3C does not have the
bandwidth to pursue it.

- Let the others "cook" for as long as it takes to get them right.  XPath
2.0 and XSLT 1.0 can "hold down the fort" for a year or two, so don't use
the argument that "such and such a proposal will delay XQuery!" as a reason
not to explore the numerous suggestions that you are getting from the user
community.  For example, this thread on XML-DEV has pointed to some
potential problems in the "half XML, half non-XML" syntax of the
element/attribute constructors that need to be carefully considered and
alternatives weighed.


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