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   RE: [xml-dev] Is HTML structured or unstructured information?

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From: Mukul Gandhi [mailto:mukul_gandhi@yahoo.com]

>Namaste to you too!

Shukriya.  Aapse milkar bahut khushii huii, Mukul ji.

>You seem to know Hindi (which is India's national
Mujhe hindii thik se nahii aatii.  Yah sundar hai. 
God willing, I will learn.

>I live in India, near Delhi at a place
>called Gurgaon, where hard core Hindi is spoken :) 

Khari boli?

Your experiences are much the same as mine.
As Tim Bray says, View Source is a primary reason 
for the spread of HTML, Javascript and so forth.

However, back on topic:  as pointed out by others, HTML 
might be called semi-structured, but I think the 
concept of structure is misleading because markup 
is structured by definition.  OTOH, even highly 
structured XML can be quite meaningless which is 
why for XML and HTML work wonderfully well for the 
humans and vary a lot for computers.  Best practices 
cover some but not all of the gaps.  In my opinion, 
naming is a harder and more important practice to 
master than structuring.  In many cases, when markup 
fails semantically, naming is at fault.  Naming is hard. 
Best practices for naming are even harder to come by.

So while a relational database may be a rigorous 
example for structure, I don't think that is what 
the article cited is really about.  If one is looking 
for patterns, relationships, intentions, meaning, is
it easier to get that from a relational database or 
from an XML instance?  It depends, in my opinion, 
on how predigested the content is, not the structure 
although the structure is useful for finding an 
answer where one already knows the question and 
the structure.  Questions are harder.

>Have a nice day Len :)

Bahut dhanyavad!  Shubh kaammnaaye, Mukul jii!



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