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   RE: [xml-dev] syntax, model

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> You are missing something fundamental. We exchange an agreed upon
> syntax. You send it with your semantics. I receive it with mine.
> Your semantics are not my semantics. There may be some overlap, but
> it doesn't have to be a lot. I may not be interested in the same
> thing you're interested in. For example, you say potato and I say
> potato, but to a store "potato" may mean inventory unit. To a shopper
> it may mean "tasty lunch". The store and the shopper do not have to
> share their internal models of a "potato" in order to do business.

Ok, so they don't need the specific model of "potato", but they do need to
share the model of "exchangeable commodity" (and associated models such as
"money") to be able to make the transaction.

> The effort to standardize semantics and data models is an effort to
> require all parties to a transaction to have a single way of looking
> at the same content.

Possibly, in a lot of cases even, but that's a wide sweep you're making.
Looking at a UML diagram one person might visualise Java, another C++.

>That's doomed to failure.

I'd say that varies case-by-case. The shared model of "money" seems to be
doing rather well.

Different parties have
> different needs and experiences, and thus do not share data models.

That doesn't follow.

> To the extent their needs and experiences overlap, their data model
> may be similar in this respects. But they need not be identical.
> There is no one semantic to rule them all. The real world is much
> messier than that.

On that I agree entirely. But by the same token, syntax isn't all, syntax
isn't enough.

Incidentally, this doesn't actually answer the question of what the web is
without the URI -> representation relational model, or show that syntax was
sufficient for the web.



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