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In the common human interpretation, the element generic
identifiers (GIs) name the content of the elements.
The facts on the ground for software are not that complex
because that simple sentence belies a very deep and
complex set of error-prone operations for software,
so they are deliberately avoided in XML.
The XML processor sees a set of labeled text nodes where the document
element node generic identifier has the value 'Person' and
has-a node with a generic identifier whose value is "name" and a
that node has a sibling element node with a gi whose value
is 'age'. The element name and the element age both have
text nodes of value "Peter Smith" and "56" respectively.
There is further defaulted information with respect to
Beyond this, XML does nothing. You have to do it and
that can be anything from cutting and pasting by hand
all the way to writing software to process the output
of the XML processor.
Now, an application processor receiving the information
items from the XML processor can interpret these as
designed. I am deliberately avoiding the 'semantic'
term, but it is definitely the case that 'semantic'
is generally understood to be handling by an application
processor. That might be, for example,
using the gi values as a map to insert or update
a relational record where the fields/column names
are Name and Age and the record has a row name of
Person. It might be to use the gis as transform
values to push the text fields into a set of HTML
list or table items.
It is important to remember this: XML has no
content semantics on its own other than the limited
set required to make XML processors compatible and
to make some aspects of identification and some
syntax easier to implement (to get rid of DTDs
as possible). Your questions are of the kind
most often seen when someone is trying to make
XML itself do more than it does. It does very little
and that is deliberate.
From: ludger goeke [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
for example I got the following xml-document
<!DOCTYPE Person [
<!ELEMENT Person (Name, Age)>
Does the markup describes the content for example "Peter Smith" in a
semantic way, that means does it describes that
the content "Peter Smith" has the semantic of a name ? Or describes the
markup the logical role of the content "Peter Smith"
and a the processing Software adds the semantic ?