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   Re: FW: [xml-dev] ANN: White Paper - "Using OWL to Avoid SyntacticRig o

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Peter.Hunsberger@stjude.org (Hunsberger, Peter) writes:
>However, it seems to me that like it or not, you've already committed
>to standardized semantics just by defining syntax...?

That strikes me as a completely perverse interpretation.

My general rule at this point is that standardization should be
performed as little as possible, and only in cases where there is clear
immediate benefit.  

Standardizing XML's syntax - and whatever semantics were needed for
that, as I acknowedged - had clear benefits.  The waves of supposedly
semantic standardization that have followed have a much more muddled
record, to put it politely.

XML's creators had the substantial advantage of three decades of work to
reduce to the smallest possible set of tools, and I hope that after
another decade we'll be able to boil those down further.  In the
meantime, however, I don't feel at all committed to standardizing and
standardizing and standardizing.

>Well, there's the issue; locally you have to standardize at least to
>the extent that you and your direct partners agree on the semantics. 
>However, with the Web it's never just local: when you exchange XML
>with someone you are exchanging semantics with everyone your partner
>has ever exchanged semantics with...  

That doesn't strike me as cause to set up an Academie Francaise for XML
vocabularies.  Communications is always about negotiation and sorting
out who will take what in what form.  Computers have never been
particularly good at such negotiation, but it may be fair to suggest
that continuing human involvement in such things is a better idea than
standardizing and automating as much of it away as possible.

I don't believe the Web changes that.

Simon St.Laurent
Ring around the content, a pocket full of brackets
Errors, errors, all fall down!
http://simonstl.com -- http://monasticxml.org


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