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Re: [xml-dev] Ten Years Later - XML 1.0 Fifth Edition?

Len Bullard wrote:
> It does not seem correct to call it an error when a specification drifts out
> of sync with another specification, in this case, Unicode.  Perhaps
> corrigenda as a synonym for errata isn't right either (corrections supplied
> after publication and inserted, or printer's error).

There's more going on here than mere syncing with another version of 
another specification. Rather than simply adding the new characters from 
Unicode 3.0-5.0, this proposal adopts a radically different approach to 
handling Unicode. It switches from explicitly listing all the allowed 
characters to explicitly listing all the forbidden ones. This opens the 
door to many characters that simply shouldn't be used in XML names at 
all such as the musical symbols and undefined characters. I do not find 
this to b a wise choice.

The proper ay to handle the problem of evolving Unicode would be to 
introduce (in new version of XML, not a new edition) a unicode-version 
attribute as part of the XML declaration. Recognized Unicode versions 
would delegate determination of legal name characters outside the ASCII 
range to the Unicode properties file. This would enable XML to match 
future versions of Unicode without being revved itself, or without 
allowing in a lot of confusing name characters no on wants.

Then again, realistically, Unicode is pretty much done in terms of new 
characters. There are no significant modern scripts left to encode. In 
fact, for name character purposes Unicode was pretty much one in version 
3.0. Very few characters have been added since then and none we really 
need as name characters. We could jsut do one rev of the spec in Unicode 
1.0 style, just to bring it up to snuff with Unicode 5.0, and declare 
victory (though I still think that if that's all we do, it's not worth 
doing, as XML 1.1 proved.)

Elliotte Rusty Harold  elharo@metalab.unc.edu
Java I/O 2nd Edition Just Published!

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