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Re: heritage (was Re: SGML on the Web)

Re:  heritage (was Re:  SGML on the Web)
Mike Champion wrote:

> I think, however, that the reason we are in this mess is there is a "heritage" in
> SGML, carried over in SAX, and now in LMNL, that markup really is Just Syntax,
> and data models are something for the application to define.  That's not a
> problem per se -- obviously lots of people get real work done in that paradigm --
> just that it doesn't fit into the world of Dynamic HTML scripters, generic XML
> authoring tools, generic XML transformation languages, generic XML DBMS systems,
> etc.  A DBMS has to take a stand on whether entities are expanded or undexpanded
> before indexing; it has to decide whether to preserve CDATA sections and
> comments, etc.  So, I can agree that "if people had defined the model before
> delivering
> the syntax" then WE (the generic data model-oriented subculture) wouldn't be in
> this mess, but then the "it's just syntax" people wouldn't have come along on the
> XML parade.

And 'XML' would have forked with every new model that enjoyed a moment of fashion
(cf. SOAP); interoperability and extensibility--still the cornerstones of the XML
sales pitch--would have fallen to squabbling sectarian liturgies; and every new
model would have spawned a 'serialization syntax' with its own demands for
tightly-fitted support from the network infrastructure. And in the next iteration,
a simplified syntax would be proposed as a new basis of interoperability and
extensibility . . .


Walter Perry


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