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   Re: [xml-dev] The task to be solved by RDDL. Re: [xml-dev] RDDL (was RE:

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I hate to sound like a broken record but

        namespace URI != HTTP URL.

What is good about RDDL is that it solves "some" of the problem which is how
to get markup/create/present metadata about a namespace. As other have pointed
it is a partial solution because it doesn't (by itself) provide a solution to

i) How to provide metadata for a doctype which is built from multiple


ii.) How to provide metadata for namespace URIs that aren't HTTP URLs.

That said, I think RDDL is a good start, NOT a solution for the entire set of
problems involving discovery of metadata about XML documents but a worthwhile
step in that direction.

If I have several diabolical schemes to destroy the hero, I will set
all of them in motion at once rather than wait for them to fail and
launch them successively.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Clark C . Evans" <cce@clarkevans.com>
To: <xml-dev@lists.xml.org>
Sent: Saturday, January 19, 2002 12:00 PM
Subject: Re: [xml-dev] The task to be solved by RDDL. Re: [xml-dev] RDDL (was
RE: [xml-dev] Negotiate Out The Noise)

> Paul,  You asked what is the purpose of RDDL?  Let me try
> to take a stab at answering.   Although namespace names
> officially are pointers into the land of abstract
> resources, most namespace names can be resolved via
> standard internet protocols, specifically http.    So.
> The question is, what is at the end of the http namespace
> name rainbow?  When it type it into my browser what happens?
> A)  Nothing / HTTP Error
>     If this is an HTTP error, then this leaves a niave
>     person who referenced the link with the feeling that
>     something is "wrong".
>     Having a URL that is "broken" is bad practice... even
>     if it was never intended to fetch something.  Thus,
>     there is a good chance an educated person who is not
>     part of the XML inner circle will be confused, or worse
>     think that the namespace name is somehow invalid.
>     IMHO, regardless of it's intellectual purity, this
>     is just not an option for me...
> B)  A Schema
>     This is nice, however, it's not human readable.  Also,
>     given recent schema competition, this is bound to strike
>     up too much controversy.
> C)  An human-readable HTML/TEXT document
>     This is a nice start.  It gives the newbie a "warm fuzzy"
>     that they can actually start to read about what the
>     namespace means.  This is the best yet, unfortunately,
>     it is not very usable by computers.
> D)  A resource directory
>     This is a very big improvement over (B) since it gives
>     automated processes a way to find out things about
>     documents using the namespace.  For example, it could
>     give a RELAX schema, a W3C schema, a Schematron schema,
>     or all of them without bias.   It could also give a
>     XML -> XHTML XSLT transform.  The possibilities here
>     are limited by your imagination.
> E)  It can point to a document that is a mix of (C) and (D).
>     This gives the best of both worlds; HTML for the humans
>     and a resource for automated processes.
> RDDL implements (E) which IMHO, is very novel and clever.  These
> various solutions bounced around on this list for some time
> without resolve till someone (Tim Bray?) proposed E.  From
> there Jonanthan and others took this "concensus" on the xml-dev
> list and made RDDL.  After a few rounds of feedback (also on
> xml-dev) it is as found at http://www.openhealth.org/RDDL/
> Many great people throw other issues into the mix such as
> (1) authentication, (2) security, (3) efficency, (4) cashing, etc.
> Perhaps I'm just not smart enough, but I've yet to be convinced
> that these are not completely othogonal issues.   Lastly,
> another issue thrown in is that RDDL is controlled by the
> namespace owner.  I figure if this becomes enough of a problem,
> some other mechanism will emerge that is more of a collaborative
> mechanism, and probably one that works _with_ RDDL rather than
> directly competing with it.
> Thus far, I'm impressed with RDDL and the problem it nicely
> solves.  As YAML grows, YAML will have the same issues to
> deal with, and I'm glad I can rest upon the body of knowledge
> constructed here at XML-DEV to guide the YAML solution.
> Most likely it will be a very similar solution to RDDL.
> I hope this helps,
> Best,
> Clark
> --
> Clark C. Evans                   Axista, Inc.
> http://www.axista.com            800.926.5525
> XCOLLA Collaborative Project Management Software
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