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   Re: [xml-dev] Hostility to "binary XML" (was Re: [xml-dev] XML 2004 webl

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> Likewise, neither WAP content nor AV metadata (BiM's historical
> target) were ever going to be Web darlings.

Correctly, if only because WAP sucked horribly at showing content and was
(remains?) a pain in the ass for most folks to create.  That it provided a
means for cell-phone users to see web content wasn't compelling enough.
That it was one format versus another had less to do with it being a crappy
user experience.  That the format was poorly documented, a pain to use and
ambigious in its licensing certainly didn't help.  Adding outrageous airtime
fees and overall poor coverage and throughput further compounded the

If alternative serializations of XML expect to take off they're going to
have to address more than just the merits of their specifications.  If
something about using one of them makes it better for all users; desktop AND
cell phones (probably in that order) then it's far more likely to gain
traction.  Trying to use phones as the only excuse, well, that hasn't worked
thus far even if it IS a good reason.

For my two cents, I think it has more to do with the fluid level of
understanding the various players bring to the equation.  They (getting out
the broad brush of generalization) barely understand how to twiddle the bits
in the right way with 'text' XML.  Give them the same sort of 'read source'
simplicity and they'll recognize the value of a new form.  Barring those
same easy tools, however, and it's going to have a hard time getting

Finally, if people think browser compatibility on desktops is bad, try
phones.  If they have some common denominator it's one that sucks worse than
plain HTML did on NS2.  Having a way to save bandwidth bits only to end up
there just isn't lighting anyone's fire.

-Bill Kearney


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