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   Re: [xml-dev] Article: "The horror of XML"

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At 12:07 PM -0500 10/30/02, John Cowan wrote:

>This is only true if you are prepared to accept documents from arbitrary
>sources.  Plenty of applications aren't.

It's been my experience that developers rarely know as much about the 
documents they're reading as they think they do. Even at the extreme 
of documents I personally generate and I personally parse, I 
occasionally find unexpected content or structures. You don't have to 
accept documents from arbitrary sources to accept documents from 
coworkers, other groups, customers, vendors, contractors, and others 
who may or may not send you what you expect.

For anything beyond a one-off, "load it into a text editor or grep 
and see what the hell is in there" application, the overhead of using 
a real XML parser is small enough that the benefit of real checking 
seriously outweighs the cost, at least on the desktop and server. 
Some people have argued that this isn't true in the embedded space, 
but they haven't convinced me. If you're really so constrained by 
memory or CPU you can't use an XML parser, then I question why you're 
using XMLin the first place.

| Elliotte Rusty Harold | elharo@metalab.unc.edu | Writer/Programmer |
|          XML in a  Nutshell, 2nd Edition (O'Reilly, 2002)          |
|              http://www.cafeconleche.org/books/xian2/              |
|  http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ISBN%3D0596002920/cafeaulaitA/  |
|  Read Cafe au Lait for Java News:  http://www.cafeaulait.org/      |
|  Read Cafe con Leche for XML News: http://www.cafeconleche.org/    |


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