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RE: [xml-dev] Text Markup Part II

This is exactly right. It merely makes explicit the implicit document

Consider a piece of fiction, containing no references, no need to index,
just a text, and pre-dating any notion of XML. It likely has chapters - in
any case, a structure that did not acknowledge the notion of chapters would
be poor. Consider the corpus "Harry Potter". Any one book could get away
without a container, but it is a set of seven books. A wrapper for each book
(call it a "cover") is natural and expected. Now transmit it as one set of
text. The covers are still useful.

Go to the ancient texts you mentioned. In the Judeo-Christian traditional
texts, there are multiple "books". There a five books in the oldest
collection, the Pentateuch. These are handled as a book of books. Most such
collections include 34 other books in the Hebrew bible. Sometimes they are
themselves classified as several other books of books, sometimes not. Some
consider each Psalm to be a book.  Similarly there are 22 books in the New
Testament, the part written in Greek and Latin .

These 66 books are often arranged into books:

Pentateuch, History, Books of Poetry, Major Prophets, Minor Prophets,
Gospels, Church History, Pauline Epistles, General Epistles, Revelation. AN
alternate arrangement produces a different set of books of books: Law,
History, Wisdom, Prophets Major and Minor, History, Letters. Still another
tradition arranges the books into Law, Warriors, Judges, Kings, Prophets,
Kingdom. These Books are themselves bound into books with names similar to
Old Testament and New Testament. Within those collections, there are a few
disputes as to which Book a given Book belongs in.  There are 15 more Hebrew
books of which the 12 are bound in another book named the Apocrypha in Roman
Catholic Tradition. It is interesting that the western Jewish tradition
leans on a festival derived from two of the Apocrypha, even though none of
the Apocrypha is accepted in the Jewish Bible. Many other "Books" named the
:Bible" have included other "Books" including still other Books"

Which is a long way of saying that these texts have always had a container,
and modern approaches, of containing them all, simply acknowledge them.

Similar descriptions could encircle Gilgamesh, or the Upanishads, of the
Mayan Codices. Or any autho fro whome the "Collected Works" have been

"A designer knows he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left
to add, but when there is nothing left to take away."
-Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Toby Considine
TC9, Inc
TC Chair: oBIX & WS-Calendar
TC Editor: EMIX, EnergyInterop
U.S. National Inst. of Standards and Tech. Smart Grid Architecture Committee

Email: Toby.Considine@gmail.com
Phone: (919)619-2104
blog: www.NewDaedalus.com

-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Hopwood [mailto:michael@editeur.org] 
Sent: Friday, January 20, 2012 7:14 AM
To: dlee@calldei.com; xml-dev@lists.xml.org
Subject: RE: [xml-dev] Text Markup Part II

>>> What I'm trying to get at is the fundamental rational between  what
appears to be two extremes not necessarily compatible, and why we ended up
with only the later.

Actually, and for a very long time before it became "cool" ;) to talk about
this, it's really only been the latter, except that the "markup" for the
rest of the document is implicit. Adding a "root" tag for the whole document
simply formalises and makes machine-readable (although you could have done
this a variety of other ways, like filename extensions) what
"documentalists" of all kinds have been doing for a very long time; (more or
less formally) identifying integral units of documentation.

A MARC21 serialisation has message headers to separate different catalogue
records in the stream - those are short documents, generally, although they
can potentially get very long. And every element, as well as the whole
thing, is marked up.


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