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   Re: [xml-dev] Attribute Order (Was: Create XML )

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At 7:54 PM -0400 6/22/03, Simon St.Laurent wrote:

>I don't care much about theories of processes expect only to feed XML
>from one computer to another.  The processes I work on are processes
>which tend to benefit from human interactions, even if human interaction
>is not something their creators expected.  In my own work, there's a lot
>of back and forth between me making edits to documents and using
>processors of various kinds.  DocBook (for O'Reilly work) is my
>nightmare in this story, but I have similar problems working with other
>vocabularies, including data-centric vocabularies.

Hmm, I haven't seen any such problems with DocBook. I probably don't 
see as much DocBook as you do, but I have written one 1000+ page book 
in DocBook, and I do use the full, unadulterated DocBook, not the 
simplified version O'Reilly uses. I don't remember anywhere there 
enough attributes on any one element for the order to be at all an 
issue, even for human legibility.

><row base_price="19.99" discount="20%" item="0001452A" quantity="3"
>tax="7%" time="08:08.72PM EST" color="pink" />
><row item="1356352A" time="08:09.81PM EST" quantity="1" discount="10%"
>tax="3.5%" base_price="4.99" />
><row base_price="19.99"  discount="50%" item="BC758333" time="08:12.14PM
>EST" quantity="1" tax="7%" color="red" />
><row item="0001452A" time="08:14.09PM EST" quantity="7" discount="0%"
>tax="3.5%" price="1.99" />
>That's not even that big a change, but finding things in that just got a
>lot harder. (Try it with a thousand rows, twenty attributes, and
>multiple choices of attribute sequence.) Instead of using the
>pattern-matching abilities that humans come with, I now get to write
>code if I want to figure out what's changed.

This just doesn't bother me. When I encounter data like this in 
plain text editor I use the equivalent of the find or grep function. 
I certainly don't scan anything that big by eye.

   Elliotte Rusty Harold
   Processing XML with Java (Addison-Wesley, 2002)


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