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[Forwarded for Steven Pemberton, yet another person who can't post
directly to the list.]
"Simon St.Laurent" <firstname.lastname@example.org> says:
> While I think [XHTML] modularization was an utter waste of time, it
> doesn't affect users working on documents.
Then you missed who it was aimed at: us (the HTML WG) and other
language designers. Indeed it doesn't affect markup language users.
We were chartered to produce several versions of XHTML. XML is
extensible at a very-fine-grained level (elements and attributes) and
we needed a coarser-grained approach. So we designed a sort of DTD API
(now also for Schemas) that allowed us to design modules so we could
plug them together to make a language. That ensures that languages that
use the same modules are interoperable across those modules. It also
means that errors only have to be fixed in one place when they are
We were able to build XHTML Basic and XHTML 1.1 from the same set of
modules, and modularisation has now been used for WAP 2, as well as
some other standards. This has so reduced our work that it certainly
hasn't been a waste of time for us!
The relative ease which we have been able to create XHTML+Math+SVG has
also demonstrated the value of Modularisation. The Math working group
had already produced a module, and it was reasonably simple to produce
an SVG module. Then we just plugged them together. (The main problem
has been character entities, which alas are not namespaced).
Steven Pemberton Chair, W3C HTML Working Group
Simon St.Laurent - SSL is my TLA
http://simonstl.com may be my URI
http://monasticxml.org may be my ascetic URI
urn:oid:22.214.171.124.4.1.6320 is another possibility altogether