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Re: [xml-dev] [OT] Re: [xml-dev] Lessons learned from the XML experiment

On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 8:46 AM, David Sheets <kosmo.zb@gmail.com> wrote:
On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 3:39 PM, Uche Ogbuji <uche@ogbuji.net> wrote:
> On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 8:34 AM, David Sheets <kosmo.zb@gmail.com> wrote:
>> On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 3:20 PM, Uche Ogbuji <uche@ogbuji.net> wrote:
>> > On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 8:02 AM, David Sheets <kosmo.zb@gmail.com>
>> > wrote:
>> >> On Fri, Nov 15, 2013 at 2:59 PM, Uche Ogbuji <uche@ogbuji.net>
>> I need to transmit a binary blob. Should I use null-terminated strings?
> So why are you using XML again?

This is a general question: are null-terminated strings the right
representation for transmitting binary blobs?

Why not?

Your question nails it in an unintended way. I was clearly talking about text. You are talking about null-terminated strings and BLOBs. There is a very big and important difference.

And no, I do not believe that text technologies are right for transmitting either null-terminated strings or BLOBs. Why not? Because they're not designed for it. You can start learning how so by trying to put a null-terminated string into XML.

If I decided to use null-terminated strings to transmit a binary blob,
would it be a "C WTF"?

Of course not, because C is designed for that.

>> >> Could you please explain how this is a problem with overly strict data
>> >> typing being more important than interpreting text in XML? I don't
>> >> understand.
>> >
>> >
>> > http://adtmag.com/articles/2002/12/01/xml-class-warfare.aspx
>> >
>> >
>> > http://adtmag.com/articles/2003/01/31/the-worry-about-program-wizards.aspx
>> >
>> > And overall, since I'm wearying of this week's revival of perma-threads
>> > from
>> > 2000-2003, I'll finish with my own version of serenity, which is the
>> > opposite of Timothy Cook's
>> >
>> > http://adtmag.com/articles/2002/09/30/serenity-through-markup.aspx
>> I read these articles and they don't seem to address why overly strict
>> data typing is the cause of this particular problem.
>> Is it because the recipient is ignoring the data type of "string" and
>> instead deciding to treat certain strings as special values?
> I believe I made the connection in the above, re-quoted below:

Sorry, I'm still not understanding how this description involving a
stack of questionable technologies relates to the problem of typed XML
transmission vs text XML transmission.

Does XSD have a type for "string or null" that uses the string "null"
to represent the null value?

>> I'm not sure what you mean by "a problem with XML." The problem is
>> manifold,
>> and starts with the XSD data typing system and the way the PSVI
>> subordinates
>> data typing to the original text. It compounds as SOAP/WSDL builds on top
>> of
>> PSVI to wire in assumptions of text interpretations in code. The true
>> fault
>> is with the developer who coded the tool with a careless fencepost that
>> actually circumvented the datatyping system altogether, but that's the
>> entire point of this "Lessons learned" thread: when you make things so
>> complex that few developers can understand and get them right (and I do
>> mean
>> few; I have experience to back that up) then you can hardly always look to
>> shift blame on the developer when they get it wrong.

Oh, I see. The developer circumvented the type system because it was
too complex? And then the developer wrote software with a type error?
And so the developer's tools were at fault? Is that what you're

From the "null terminated strings" bit and this one, I can tell your viewpoint on this is very programmer-literal, and so we're on very different worlds in taking lessons from that situation.  So the answer is no that's not what I'm saying, but Ive already said what I'm saying.

Uche Ogbuji                                       http://uche.ogbuji.net
Founding Partner, Zepheira                  http://zepheira.com
Author, Ndewo, Colorado                     http://uche.ogbuji.net/ndewo/
Founding editor, Kin Poetry Journal      http://wearekin.org
Editor & Contributor, TNB     http://www.thenervousbreakdown.com/author/uogbuji/
http://copia.ogbuji.net    http://www.linkedin.com/in/ucheogbuji    http://twitter.com/uogbuji

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