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RE: [xml-dev] To namespace or not to Namespace ....

> XQuery really messed this up big time... such a simple thing, 
> and such a huge amount of hassle caused by it.  I know I'm 
> not the only one to be amazed when you first realise that is 
> what is happening.

Yes, it's definitely a usability trap: but then, so many things with
namespaces are.

My recollection of the history, at a high level of abstraction, is that I
was constantly pointing out namespace problems to the XQuery Working Group,
and proposing new features to deal with the problems, and the WG
collectively was getting more and more irritated by the complexity that each
new feature added to the language; so it got to the point where I decided it
would be prudent to let the WG hear the problems from users rather than from

It all goes back to the fact that the namespace facility as designed back in
1999 was a really bad piece of design work. I wish I could find the email
that I wrote at the time saying "it doesn't matter that it's bad: it's an
optional feature, and it's so bad that no-one will use it." But I think that
not using namespaces isn't really an option today: they are too ingrained in
the ecosystem.


Michael Kay

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