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following several discussions we've had lately, mostly on relational
models and document management i'm going to float the idea - which may
be covered elsewhere, please redirect me if appropriate - that having a
taxonomy of xml may help us to understand what forms, and when are good
for different problems.
if we take numbers as an analogy (and that's all it is, there are plenty
of others) they can be divided into sets - integer, real, rational,
irrational, complex, etc and we increase our understanding and use of
numbers by developing theorems that cover the different sets.
it seems to me that xml is as diverse as numbers or any similar grouping
and that by focusing on well defined sets of xml structures and their
properties we can get the theorems to improve our use and understanding.
eg one set might be xml with tags only - no attributes; another might be
xml that is constrained to two levels; etc
by understanding the properties and operators that are valid on these
sets we can then see the analogies to other technologies such as
relational models, markup, etc.
just a thought at the moment