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   Re: [xml-dev] overrun with bohemians?

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Simon St.Laurent wrote:
> Maybe most of the gentry and royalty have left the list - talk of
> revolution and guillotines probably doesn't help - but xml-dev seems to
> have gone over pretty thoroughly to the position Uche described as
> bohemian.  
> There are certainly document folks around, but there are also lots of
> people who work with data and even think in terms of data, but who value
> XML's labeled but untyped textual foundations.

Indeed. Typing can be as useful as any metadata can be, and thus just as 
dangerous. We may have too little experience as yet with typed XML to know just 
how much damage it can do, but if there's anything to learn from programming 
languages, it's clear that it should *never* be enforced, and *never* be made 
necessary. It's one and only place is in pattern matching and specific 
processing, ie optional, failsafe metadata.

> It makes me feel more optimistic than I have in a while, though I also
> worry that this is simply a place where bohemians congregate.  

I don't want to be too much on the doom and gloom side, but again if programming 
languages are anything to judge the future by it doesn't look good. I've already 
had otherwise perfectly smart people and daily users of XML stare at me aghast 
with a "what... you mean you can have schemaless XML documents?". I'm afraid it 
won't be long before we start hearing "typeless XML!!!! but that's dangerous!", 
or "yeah, cute, but you can't do a real project with that", and "bah, that's not 
serious XML".

Types are indeed very useful when used right, and I'm happy to have them handy 
when they're needed... but in the event that they become omnipresent, I must say 
that the frog in me likes that guillotine talk he's hearing ;)

Robin Berjon <robin.berjon@expway.fr>
Research Engineer, Expway
7FC0 6F5F D864 EFB8 08CE  8E74 58E6 D5DB 4889 2488


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