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Re: [xml-dev] Error and Fatal Error

Actually, Liam, the SQL designers did consider the possibility of 
random unknown humans typing SQL code into "text boxes".  We call 
that "interactive SQL" (more formally, the SQL standard calls it 
"direct SQL").  However, that alleged "SQL code" is parsed just like 
SQL code embedded in a C program would be and the existence of a 
syntax error is required to cause the direct SQL processor to reject 
further processing of the alleged "SQL code", except that the 
processor is allowed to report the existence of other syntax errors 
as much as it wishes.

I'd go so far as to say that this is a feature and not a 
bug.  Imagine the consequences if a well-trained, well-intentioned, 
and well-directed -- but exhausted -- human were entering SQL 
statements to, say, update some office assignments, and one of those 
statements contained a syntax error that the parser "corrected" to 
what it believed was the "right" syntax -- but the result turned out 
to be deletion of all employees whose family name started with "S" or 
the transfer of several thousand employees to the company's offices 
in Bolivia?  Databases are simply too valuable to be modified based 
on guesses by software not cognizant of the specific application 
using a given database.

Sure, there may well be some "obvious" cases that can be corrected 
automatically -- but even those will turn out to have hidden 
assumptions that will likely severely damage somebody's data in 
unrecoverable ways.

No, the XML spec is not perfect, and perhaps I would have done some 
things differently, as would many of you.  But it is a long-accepted 
spec with loads of software written to conform to it and to depend on 
conformation to it.  And that has enormous value.

Hope this helps,

At 7/18/2011 07:34 AM, Liam R E Quin wrote:

>The use case of random unknown humans typing (C code, SQL, assembly
>code, ...) into text boxes was not considered by the respective language
>designers either, many of whom would have had very little patience for
>the idea.

Jim Melton --- Editor of ISO/IEC 9075-* (SQL)     Phone: +1.801.942.0144
   Chair, ISO/IEC JTC1/SC32 and W3C XML Query WG    Fax : +1.801.942.3345
Oracle Corporation        Oracle Email: jim dot melton at oracle dot com
1930 Viscounti Drive      Alternate email: jim dot melton at acm dot org
Sandy, UT 84093-1063 USA  Personal email: SheltieJim at xmission dot com
=  Facts are facts.   But any opinions expressed are the opinions      =
=  only of myself and may or may not reflect the opinions of anybody   =
=  else with whom I may or may not have discussed the issues at hand.  =

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