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   "Have a canonical XML representation even if the usual notation isn'tXML

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This is a good sentiment that applies similarly to the concept of a "binary encoding of the XML infoset" vs. XML 1.0 textual encoding.

I know, we have discussed this before:
http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/199802/threads.html#00174  "Binary Data", Michael Emmel
http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/199903/threads.html#00802  "Is there anyone working on a binary version of XML?", Stephen Williams
http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/200104/threads.html#00205  ""Binary XML" proposals", Tim Bray
http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/200212/threads.html#00375  "Re: The privilege of XML parsing - Data types,binary XML", Claude L (Len) Bullard
http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/200308/threads.html#00018  " Re: [xml-dev] Binary XML == "spawn of the devil" ?", Liam Quin
http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/200307/threads.html#00801  "Re: [xml-dev] Binary XML == "spawn of the devil" ?", Andrew Watt

Many are beginning to have the view that a binary structured infoset with all XML representational semantics except that the encoding isn't textual is still substantially "XML".  XML 1.0 has a single class of textual encodings; XML 2.0 should have a new class of efficient binary structure encoding.  Quite a number of people who have developed real world applications using traditional XML and pre-XML methods have a strong desire for solutions in this space.  We had a thorough and spririted discussion at the W3C workshop last week.

Note that I am not suggesting that scalars should be encoded in binary, but images and other b64 data including nested XML documents should be encoded directly.  Additionally, I do not subscribe, generally, to the use of schemas to produce a non-self-describing format (in the usual XML sense), although I do think that the ability to support general XML object deltas (not just XML fragments) is important and can achieve the same kind of efficiency gain.

My main goals are to have an efficient structured data format that is compact, directly modifiable, requires no parsing or serialization, and supports the most efficient and easy to program interface possible in many languages.

For my view and solutions, see: http://www.esxml.org

To quote David Megginson and Simon from the March, 1999 thread:
At 04:35 PM 3/25/99 -0500, David Megginson wrote:
>Simon St.Laurent writes:
> > One of these days I'd really love to stop talking about what is and isn't
> > XML, though I know it's fun, and start talking about what we can do with
> > XML and XML-like structures, whether they are SAX event flows, DOM trees,
> > or binary formats that build on an XML foundation.
> > 
> > We might even get some real work done - and it might even be fun.
>Nah, we're getting work done already -- we need to goof off once in a
>Here's my translation of the above paragraph:
> One of these days I'd really love to stop talking about what is and
> isn't XML, though I know it's fun, and start talking about what we
> can do with structured documents, whether they're in text format (as
> XML, HTML, SGML, etc.), in binary format, in databases, or available
> through abstract interfaces like SAX, the DOM, and Groves.

That translation's fine by me!  I just don't want people getting shut down
because their project "isn't XML".

Simon St.Laurent


Simon St.Laurent wrote:
ndw@nwalsh.com (Norman Walsh) writes:
That is: RELAX NG has an XML syntax, the XML syntax was designed
first, and the language works as an XML grammar. The compact syntax is
a (carefully designed, thoughtfully conceived) add-on.

That's a great way of looking at it, and I think you're right that it's
important.  It fits well with my general preference that things have a
canonical XML representation even if the usual notation isn't XML, as

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