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Re: XML too hard for programmers?

html streaming push
At 4:43 PM +0100 3/17/03, Robin Berjon wrote:

>In fact, there has been some work within the Perl community to 
>address the problems that programmers evidently face when using the 
>dominant SAX/DOM/XPath/XSLT combo.

I strongly suspect that a large part of the problem is that exactly 
none of these were designed with Perl in mind. As DOM has shown 
beyond any doubt, cross-language APIs are a disaster that satisfy no 
one. Interoperability needs to be achieved at the XML level, not the 
API level. I don't care which API or language you use to process your 
XML documents as long as I can send you XML and receive XML back.

There are a few general types of APIs (tree-based, streaming pull, 
streaming push, data binding) and these types have different 
strengths and weaknesses. The most generic experiences with such APIs 
may cross language boundaries (e.g. use a streaming API when 
documents are very big relative to memory) but anything beyond that 
is misdirected effort. SAX is a good Java API. It is not a good Perl 
API, and Perl should not slavishly imitate it. Instead, the Perl 
community should develop their own streaming push API (If indeed 
that's what they need. Perhaps they'd prefer a pull API as Bray 
suggests.) that adheres to Perl's conventions and builds on Perl's 
strengths. Ditto for Python, C, C++, Eiffel, and so forth.

| Elliotte Rusty Harold | elharo@m... | Writer/Programmer |
|           Processing XML with Java (Addison-Wesley, 2002)          |
|              http://www.cafeconleche.org/books/xmljava             |
| http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ISBN%3D0201771861/cafeaulaitA  |
|  Read Cafe au Lait for Java News:  http://www.cafeaulait.org/      |
|  Read Cafe con Leche for XML News: http://www.cafeconleche.org/    |


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