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   Re: [xml-dev] Is an element's name metadata?

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What is meta data depends on what you view as data. The element name 
could be considered to be meta data if the data (for you) is the 
collection of elements and attributes (as opposed to their content). In 
programmer's terms, the DOM getName() method is accessing element meta 
data. With this view of the world, 100% of the time, the element name is 
metadata for the construct that represents the element in the XML tree 
(infoset, DOM, call it what you will).

If on the other hand your view is that the content is the data, then the 
classical view of XML is that the element is defining some form of 
meaning for the content it encloses - I have seen this referred to as 
the element being a "modifier"  for the content (but I guess that 
depends on what "modifier" means to you ;-). So following this view, I 
don't think that one can come out and say that in 100% of cases the 
element name is meta data on the element content, because it is 
dependent on the form of modifier that the element is intended to 
express, it depends on your application. Consider <b>foo</b> - in XHTML, 
the <b> is a display modifier on its content but it doesn't really 
convey any semantic meta data at the kind of level that your <reporter> 
example does.



Gustaf Liljegren wrote:

>I've heard some people say that the markup is by itself metadata, that an
>element's name is metadata, because it describes the element's content:
><reporter>    <-- This is metadata
>John Smith    <-- This is data
>Isn't this wrong? Comparing to what I learned from Dublin Core, metadata is
>data too. It's not just the name of a property. I'd say it's the element's
>context that decides whether <reporter> is a data or a metadata element.
><reporter>    <-- This is just the name of a property
>John Smith    <-- This may be metadata, depending on the element's context
>Is this the right way to think about metadata in XML?
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