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   Re: [xml-dev] more QName madness

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John Cowan wrote:
> Jonathan Borden scripsit:
> > > It would be really cool; it's probably well beyond the state of the
> > > art, unless the "description" were written in Java er sumpn.
> >
> > Hardly beyond the state of the art. I've suggested in
> > http://www.rddl.org/fragment-syntax that support for XPointer schemes might
> > be indicated in a RDDL document (one which might be dereferenced from the
> > XPointer scheme namespace for example) e.g.
> [snip]
> > Now it should be straightfoward to add pointers to various language
> > implementations of XPointer scheme dereferencing mechanisms via something
> > like:
> That was just my point: in order to *really* support interop of the
> kind D.V. wants, we need mobile code, not just "descriptions".

Great googly moogly.

We don't need mobile code.  We need a reasonable XPointer

XPointer was supposed to solve *one* *simple* problem: how to
locate part of an XML document and/or a specific position in
an XML document.  And yes, this _is_ a simple problem.  It's
been solved dozens of times.  We just need a standardized way
to do it.

URLs provide the machinery to locate the document as a whole;
all that was left to do was work out the details of the fragment
identifier.  And yes, this is about URLs, not URIs:  URIs can use
whatever the hell they want after the # sign, since their only purpose
is to Identify.  XPointer is for people who need to Locate.

We don't need an extensible framework for multiple addressing
schemes.  We need *one* scheme that *works*.

But the XPointer WG apparently couldn't agree on a single
scheme that works, so we got an extensible framework instead.
So fragment identifiers get a bit longer -- you have to
say "Using scheme 'foo', locate element 'bar'" instead of
just "locate element 'bar'".

We don't need this, but we could live with it.

But then it gets worse: since you have to identify scheme "foo",
what better way, someone must have thought, than to Identify
it with a URI?  So now you have to say "Using scheme
'http://www.example.com/foo' locate element 'bar'" instead of
"Using scheme 'foo' locate element 'bar'".

We *really* don't need this.   Only a rabid URI fetishist
would even consider embedding URIs in the fragment identifier of
a URL --and embedding them via QNames is just insane -- but
apparently the URI fetishists have a quorum, 'cause that's
what we got.

And now people are talking about using the URI that Identifies
the XPointer scheme to Locate a machine-processable definition
of that scheme.  We absolutely, positively, DO NOT NEED THIS.

What we need is a reasonable XPointer specification, with
one scheme, that works.

--Joe English



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