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Re: Re: [xml-dev] ID/IDREF is evil

On 02/16/14, Peter Flynn wrote:
On 02/04/2014 01:39 AM, Arjun Ray wrote:
> > Declaring ID attributes in an internal subset was quite obviously a 
> > non-starter. We should have bit the bullet then and invented some
> > new syntax. (I actually thought of several back then, but held my
> > peace.)

> Sadly, I think we all thought of several, even before the emergence of
> the W3C Schema. One of which would have been an extended DTD format.

I was more interested in new instance syntax, actually.  Recall that there was an emphasis on processing without a DTD - which now can be restated as processing without "schema information", whatever its form, DTD, RNG or WXS.  I think we didn't quite grasp the necessity of new syntax to reduce dependence on meta-information outside the instance.

My most radical idea was to extend the notion of VI (Value Indicator) from just '=' to a set of characters, according to the major categories of declared values.  Thus instead of name="value" for all attributes, we could have had name@"value" for IDREF/S, name&"value" for ENTITY/IES, name%"value" for notations and name*"value" for NMTOKENS, leaving name="value" for CDATA only.  And an ID attribute wouldn't need a name or surrounding quotes at all, if we tacked it onto the GI with a separator, like '!'.     


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