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Re: [xml-dev] Wikipedia on XML

On 08/08/09 18:46, Tim Bray wrote:
> On Aug 8, 2009, at 2:09 AM, Michael Kay wrote:
>> Surely syntax is just one part of language?
>> * The syntax says you are allowed to write <A>XYZ</A>.
>> * The semantics (dare I use the term?) says that when you do so, you have
>> uttered an element whose name is A and whose content is XYZ.
> How's this: The Extensible Markup Language (XML) specification defines
> the syntax rules for a family of markup languages loosely referred to as
> "XML", as well as a system for declaring the selection and ordering of
> the markup elements which may appear in a particular markup language
> which is a member of the family.
> I think that's accurate but it feels kind of long and klunky. Anyone got
> any polish to apply? -T

Looking at the 'what is XML' type of reader (Mike Kays idea of not 
writing for xml-dev readers) on wikipedia,

Extensible Markup Language (XML)  defines the  rules (syntax) for markup 
languages  and a system for  ordering the  parts (elements) which may 
appear in a particular markup language.

Then perhaps one of Jim's examples?

For example, a very simple Invoice markup language could have an instance
such as:

    <customerName>Fred Smith</customerName>

It is common to say this markup *is* XML, but it is more precise to say 
it is one of many possible markup languages that complies with XML.
The example above contains an outer element tag with the name invoice 
with child elements whose names are date and customerName.  Note, this 
use of element tags complies with the general rules of XML.  On the 
other hand, using tag names like "invoice", "date" and "customerName" 
are part of the specific Invoice Markup Language we have created here. 
Furthermore, the data, such as "2001-12-12T12:34:10Z", is specific to 
this instance of an invoice with other instances of invoice likely, 
themselves having their own dates.


Dave Pawson

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