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Yes, we all know that S-expressions have been able to do what most of
use XML for for decades. The primary benefit of XML is not the syntax
nor any other technical reasons but the fact that for once most of the
software industry is agreeing on a common data interchange format across
all levels. One that satisfies the needs of the data heads, the document
heads and the in-betweeners.
Now I'm pretty sure every domain specific expert can come up with a
syntax for XML which best suits their use cases and ignores others
(S-expressions for XHTML, yeah right) but I expect the W3C would be wise
enough to realize that mandating such alternate syntaxes are a quick way
to fragment XML. I much prefer the XML Infoset and the lessons it brings
as the mechanism for doing such things than W3C mandated alternate
PITHY WORDS OF WISDOM
Any philosophy that can be put into a nutshell belongs there.
This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Doug Ransom [mailto:Doug.Ransom@pwrm.com]
> Sent: Friday, June 21, 2002 10:40 AM
> To: Xml-Dev@Lists. Xml. Org (E-mail)
> Subject: [xml-dev] Relax Lexical vs XML Lexical structure
> I think the very fact that relax uses a non-xml lexical
> structure, and the obvious lexical clumsiness of XSLT (of
> which its xml infoset makes great sense), identifies an
> opportunity to improve the lexical structure of XML.
> Historically, I doubt XML was intended by its designers to
> represent schemas, programming language, etc or really
> intended for users to spend much time editing with an editor
> or looking at as a text file. But we all do these things.
> Maybe XML 1.3 should acknowledge XML use is larger than
> imagined, and define an alternative (preferred) lexical syntax.
> For example
> <A v="3" j="8" >
> could be more succiently serialized into a more human and
> machine readable format. Haskell and python are excellent
> examples of making code more readible using
> indentation instead of seperator tokens.
> A b=3 j=8
> or if you must have delimiters,
> (K (A b=3 j=8 (C) =Cool))
> This does mean that every application might need two parsers.
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