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   Re: [xml-dev] Datatypes - it's in the contract

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Jonathan Robie scripsit:

> I am used to notations as a way of identifying an external application, but 
> you apparently want to use it in some other way. I don't think that the 
> notion of integer is specific to any particular application or programming 
> language.

One of the many ironies of XML development is that notations were left
in the language, but without a word of explanation in the Rec, so that
only the SGML weenies knew what they were for, namely datatypes.

Attributes of type NOTATION have a value declared by a NOTATION declaration
in the DTD, which specifies a system id and/or a public id.  What for?
The idea was supposed to be that the system and/or public id specified
what the datatype was, without necessarily dereferencing it (the same
thing later reinvented for namespace names).  But the reason for the
NOTATION attribute in the first place was to say that the content of this
element was of the type specified therein.

Datatype facets were represented by attributes associated with notations,
which did *not* make it into XML.  Everything was already there in
potentia, all to be lost for the want of a horseshoe-nail's worth of

So it goes.

John Cowan   <jcowan@reutershealth.com>   http://www.ccil.org/~cowan
"One time I called in to the central system and started working on a big
thick 'sed' and 'awk' heavy duty data bashing script.  One of the geologists
came by, looked over my shoulder and said 'Oh, that happens to me too.
Try hanging up and phoning in again.'"  --Beverly Erlebacher


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