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   RE: [xml-dev] What is the rule for parsing XML in a namespaceinside HTML

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At 6:56 PM -0700 7/12/04, Joshua Allen wrote:

>Yeah, it's shows the narcissism of most developers.  "Please rewrite
>your page in some buzzword-compliant gobbledy-gook subset of XML that is
>less reliable and harder to test than what you were already doing, and
>then I can theoretically write a screenscraper".

Not theoretically I can write a screenscraper. *In practice* I can 
write a screenscraper. More importantly, so can the person who's 
publishing the page and likely has more need to process the page with 
software than anybody else on the planet. Sure it helps everybody, 
but it helps the web site author most.

I fail to see how XHTML is harder to test. In many ways it is much 
easier to test. For instance, you can verify that a page is correct 
without resort to a browser, and if the browser fails to render valid 
XHTML, then one can legitimately lay the blame at the feet of the 
browser vendor.

Which brings me to my next point: to the extent that XHTML is less 
reliable than  classic HTML, this is precisely because of Microsoft's 
piss-poor and half-hearted support for the technology. IE should 
accept valid XHTML without exception. That it doesn't is Microsoft's 
fault, not the fault of site authors or XHTML's inventors. Word, 
FrontPage, Office, and other tools that save HTML should generate 
well-formed XHTML without exception, and valid XHTML in most 
circumstances. That they don't is Microsoft's fault. The only 
narcissism here is Microsoft's claim that because they don't support 
XHTML it doesn't matter and doesn't work.

   Elliotte Rusty Harold
   Effective XML (Addison-Wesley, 2003)


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