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   Re: [xml-dev] Registered Namespace prefixes

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Jeff Lowery wrote:

> The advantage of a registry is that prefixed names become universal names when
> prefixes are registered.

But do the things which they *name* become thereby universal (which is, after
all, the effect which we are trying to achieve here)?

> There are no scope issues.

On the contrary, what remains are nothing but scope issues. The intent of
namespaces is to disambiguate names by properly assigning them to semantic
domains, But from the point of view of the processing nodes which will act upon
the documents in which those names are found, the only accurate (or useful)
assignment of names to domains is the assignment to particular processing from
among the choices which might be invoked at that node. Ultimately, from that
local point of view, the correct assignment of any name is to the processing
from which useful results have been produced in processing analogous names and
their data content in the past. And, of course, nothing could be more local and
idiosyncratic than such a database of experience and its (always local)

I have 'namespaced' since 1999 by the provenance of XML documents and by the
structure in which names are found in them. In my experience, a processing node
has a miserable first week as it learns what to expect in documents from each of
its sources. After that, non-recognition of names drops to well below 0.1% and,
except for the spike when new data sources come online, runs consistently far
below the level at which it would be economic to adjust or optimize the
namespacing portion of processing.


Walter Perry


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