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   RE: [xml-dev] Remembering the original XML vision

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-----Original Message-----
From: Bullard, Claude L (Len) [mailto:clbullar@ingr.com]
Sent: Tuesday, February 18, 2003 10:02 AM
To: 'David Megginson'; xml-dev@lists.xml.org
Subject: RE: [xml-dev] Remembering the original XML vision


Is this a fair assertion:  few markup system
users will be productive unless a markup specialist
sets up the system for them?  A lot about the
perception of markup is determined by the
tradeoffs this person is trained to make.

Given that assertion, what is the best markup
design that the specialist can produce to
get the highest productivity from the user?

What is the impact of the GUI chosen on the
design of the XML? (ideally, none, but this
implies costs).


i am thinking of the system going into dept of justice and house of commons
in canada (conversion to xml based system).  at the start it was asserted
that 'at best' the new authoring system would be as good as the old for
authoring (benefits were downstream based on having xml encoded documents)

this was because the authors of things like 'bills for parliament' were
concerned with the content and language of the bill... not the mechanics of
producing the bill... which is as it should be.  the old system was an
extensively customized WP for DOS system, designed for maximum productivity
of the authors who would author simultaneously in english and french (i.e.
not a translation process)... so the author wanting to put a particular
structure into the bill hit a macro key and it was inserted and formatted
correctly on the screen. at this point it became basically a form based
system (fill in the blanks for this structure).  this concept carried over
into the new system design.

on the contrary... using a generic xml authoring system out of the box and
expecting authors like these to produce well formed and valid bills without
ever being aware of the underlying xml logic and tag structure seems to be a
non starter.

so i would say your initial assertion is generally valid. in this particular
instance.. preserving the original mental model for the authors of bills as
much as possible (rather than a complete 100% make over) was deemed to be
critical.  disrupting parliament because of some system design is likely to
be a career limiting event ;)


W. Hugh Chatfield  I.S.P.
CyberSpace Industries 2000 Inc.
XML Consulting & Training
See also:  http://www.all-about-perth.com


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