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Re: [xml-dev] Pragmatic namespaces

On Thu, Aug 06, 2009 at 08:36:05AM +0100, Pete Cordell wrote:
> Original Message From: "Liam Quin"
> If you make the namespace more obviously separable from the local name, 
> (for example, by using a : rather than another .)

The you lose compatibility - namespace-aware XML processors will
report an error

> then the XML parser can 
> be informed as a local implementation that namespace org.ietf.html is an 
> alias of namespace org.w3.html

There are two different discussions -- how could namespaces have been
designed differently, and, how can we improve the current mess.
I admit I'm more interested in the second of these, and I believe
(at least at the moment) that any improvement must retain compatibility
(which Tim's proposal more or less does) --
C1: all existing well-formed XML documents continue to be well-formed
    under the "new" rules;
C2: all "new" well-formed XML documents are also well-formed under
    the existing ("old") rules and work in existing software.

It's true that some software may already interpret a dot in an
XML name -- e.g. CSS -- although any software worth using will
have a way to escape the dot, e.g.
    org.w3.html.p {
        /* refers to <org><w3><html><p>.... */

    org\.w3\.html\.p {
        /* refers to a single element called org.w3.html.p */

I don't know how reliable CSS implementations are at that, but it's
just an example, there are plenty of languages that use a dot.

I had thought of proposing an underscore in my XIN and (later)
automatic namespaces proposal.

I have a talk on this subject coming up at Balisage [1] next
week in Montreal; maybe I should make the talk really really short
and allow lots of time for open discussion, to hear people's


[1] http://www.balisage.net/ - be there or just be elsewhere.

Liam Quin, W3C XML Activity Lead, http://www.w3.org/People/Quin/
http://www.holoweb.net/~liam/ * http://www.fromoldbooks.org/

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