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   RE: [xml-dev] Have JDOM / XOM / etc. failed? If so, why?

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Hey Len,

I know you're a busy guy and these points flow out quickly because 
they must if you are to respond to these conversations in the course 
of your work. Takes one to know one.

However, this could use a serious edit. I often let myself write 
long, rambling episodic reposts to messages that strike a chord with 
me, then read them, gag and delete them, having gotten another morsel 
of excess out of my system. This might benefit from such a practice. 
There's several points in there, but not all related to the Dog Offal 
Monster, which along with cookies are my favorite targets of 
derision, disgust and downright diatribe. In fact I just belched out 
a vent of hypersteam against cookies in another mailing list because 
I am forced to use them as a way to track users in Web Services, 
where I had hoped by now we would have a less egregious, less 
intrusive, and more controllable mechanism.

However, perhaps I am just getting callused, to match my callous 
character, but I now view the DOM as something that works, is 
accepted and is largely unavoidable, so I just work with it. That 
doesn't mean I like it or that I don't want something easier and 

I would like something better, and I am noodling something that grows 
out of the Reference Model to Reference Architecture to (?) to 
Reference Implementation progression. The only tentative name I can 
give to it actually makes it more confusing rather than less, since 
it is used by other modeling systems and standards, but I would like 
for there to be a Reference Information Model (another RIM) that 
equates to controlled vocabulary level (in the ontology-taxonomy 
framework) to replace or occupy a level above the DOM, and perhaps 
from which to pull a DOM from for the Generic Document level from the 
domain-specific controlled vocabulary level. My thinking is that if 
this is all modeled correctly in the progression, carefully using 
Subject Matter Experts for scenarios leading to formal use-case and 
then to formal, traceable  requirements, the standards we create will 
produce better implementations quicker and more consistently than is 
presently the case.


At 8:45 AM -0600 3/31/06, Bullard, Claude L \(Len\) wrote:
>Because in a cut and paste world, the examples that are viewed most 
>often become
>the patterns by which large and irreversible trends are 
>created.  Web code like any
>other signal fed to the Big Amplifier takes on a life of its own. 
>Intellectuals believe
>smart ideas shape the future; they are only half right.   The forces 
>of acceptance
>are much more aligned with what one learns first, then what is 
>accepted by desirable
>others visibly and last what is affordable initially.   The web as a 
>of ideas and technologies is not as some would have one believe, a 
>wild wild west
>of heroes and villains, the quick and the dead; it is a street 
>market akin to the illicit
>drug trade where habits become needs, the witless become chic models 
>for the naive,
>and the smell of slow rot mingles among the flash of fresh cash and 
>unlined faces
>with strangely hazy eyes.
>The more choices provided, the fewer the sales.  When faced with uncertainty
>(the effect of lots of hard-to-differentiate choices), most 
>customers leave the
>store without purchasing.  Mammals hesitate and any market that is broad
>in choice but shallow in sales evaporates.  Eventually, the deepest of the
>various pools begins to expand as a rebranded product with a wave of
>new and different merchandising for old and proven but easily stolen
>concepts.   Customers are seldom research analysts and the true origins
>of products are not interesting to them.    What we do not vette in design,
>every short cut we take in implementation and certification becomes more
>work to be done after the sale.   Customers don't see the process; they
>see the wrappers and once purchased, they defend the omissions and the
>bugs because to do otherwise is to admit a mistake.
>Do you care who invented your blue jeans?  Do you buy based on style
>or fit?   Once the market says a thing is true and worthwhile, most buy
>without question.  Fact and quality only matters to the aware. 
>Code frameworks
>are in no way free of the effects of mass marketing and the web has not
>made the slightest bit of difference in this; it has in fact, amplified it.
>Awareness is hard work.  Do you have the time or the money? 
>Mediocrity is the name of the game, Michael, because excellence is
>too rare to acquire often and too expensive to sell in mass markets.
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Michael Champion [mailto:michael.champion@hotmail.com]
>Sent: Thursday, March 30, 2006 12:36 PM
>To: xml-dev
>Subject: [xml-dev] Have JDOM / XOM / etc. failed? If so, why?
>In some internal discussions of the XLinq 
><http://msdn.microsoft.com/netframework/future/linq/>http://msdn.microsoft.com/netframework/future/linq/ project, 
>I got a very interesting bit of devil's advocacy that went something 
>like this:  "People complain about the DOM, but they don't embrace 
>alternatives.  For all the work that people have done to provide 
>alternatives such as JDOM, dom4j, XOM, etc. in the Java world, the 
>typical users and the major Java players still use DOM, warts and 
>all."   I'm not at all convinced this is true, but I don't have any 
>information at my fingertips to dispute it.  Would anyone care to 
>present facts on one side or the other?
>But if this is true, why have cleaner, programming language-friendly 
>alternatives failed to displace the dear old DOM as the dominant XML 
>programming model after all these years?  I have a few hypotheses 
>(and these are MY hypotheses, not some FUD from Evil Empire Central 
>Command, so blame me for any stupidities and the blatant 
>- Duh, the network effect.  A mediocre standard beats a better 
>non-standard every time.
>- Serious XML developers use XSLT for the heavy lifting and simply 
>don't worry about APIs any more.
>- Sun and IBM haven't included any of the alternatives in their 
>distributions, so the masses don't even know these things exist, or 
>fear being stranded in a backwater if they do adopt one.
>- Compiled languages are *so* last century, all the interesting XML 
>processing alternatives are in the dynamic languages world.  [E4X | 
>Python | Ruby | PHP | Scala ] rulez, who cares about any of that 
>stuff anymore?
>Thoughts on any of these hypotheses, anyone?
>I must emphasize that the XLinq project is very much on track, has 
>strong management support, and you can expect updated preview bits / 
>samples / documentation Real Soon Now, so I'm not trying to drum 
>up external support for any internal battles. Likewise, Microsoft 
>has absolutely no plans to deprecate XmlDocument (the DOM vehicle 
>in .NET)  ... I'm just doing the usual xml-dev navel gazing thing :-)
>Crush! Zap! Destroy! Junk e-mail trembles before the might of 
>Windows Live(tm) Mail beta. 
>Live(tm) Mail beta

Rex Brooks
President, CEO
Starbourne Communications Design
GeoAddress: 1361-A Addison
Berkeley, CA 94702
Tel: 510-849-2309


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