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Re: Fwd: [xml-dev] Not using mixed content? Then don't use XML

On Wed, Apr 10, 2013 at 8:55 AM, Sean McGrath <sean.mcgrath@propylon.com> wrote:
[Len Bullard]
Contracts have to care.  If they don’t then the humans won’t.

This get to the nub of it. I think of it this way :

1 - If a data corpus, really and truly is known to fit a schema, then schemas can be very useful, as long as authors/editors don's subvert it.

2 - Authors are very likely to subvert the intent of the schema. Taking shortcuts is human nature

3 - The question of whether or not a corpus of data really and truly is known to fit a schema is a profound one. Semantic markup always has a bias, a point of view, perspective that may is not as shared as the schema creators typically think. After all, bias is what the other guy has.

4 - Everybody interested in XML schemas should read Sausserre:

"Shared understanding" is really really tricky because the concept of a shared language is really, really tricky. Humans communicate probabilistically for the most part, but we tend not to be conscious of that.

Schemas ain't probabilistic.

Very aptly put!  The above is why I prefer my schema languages closer to the realm of the human than the machine.  They should be flexible and easy to adapt to context.  This is true whether they are used prescriptively or descriptively.

Once again Schematron and Examplotron suit.  RELAX NG mostly suits.  The less said about XSD the better.  As many have said, the problem is not with the idea of a schema.  The problem is in how they're so often (mis)used.

Uche Ogbuji                       http://uche.ogbuji.net
Founding Partner, Zepheira        http://zepheira.com

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