Re: syntax, model
Tim Bray wrote: > Simon St.Laurent wrote: > > Most of the documents I create personally have no schema. The data > > model is open, defined only by the instance. The code I write for > > processing these documents requires no schema. The code has its own > > data model, which may or may not resemble the structure of the > > document. > > Me too, for the frequent occurrence of cooking up an ad-hoc vocabulary > for some particular problem. For a language that's going to be > widely-shared, you really ought to write a schema (preferably .rnc), > for three reasons: > > 1. It forces you to write down your design formally and exposes glaring > gaps > in your thinking. It does for me, anyhow. > 2. It's useful documentation, there are those who really find schemas > easier to read than instances. Weird but true. ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Hm. Do you really think that's weird, or was that humor? Taking Atom as an example: if I want to write software that produces or consumes it, the schema here: <URL: http://www.tbray.org/ongoing/pie/0.2/pie02.rnc > is infinitely more valuable than the sample instances here: <URL: http://www.tbray.org/ongoing/pie/0.2/atom02maximal.xml > <URL: http://www.tbray.org/ongoing/pie/0.2/atom02minimal.xml > The sample instances leave _way_ too many questions unanswered. Now with sufficient intuition and guesswork, you can _probably_ write software that _usually_ works _most_ of the time if all you have by way of a specification is a collection of sample inputs. Personally, I'd rather have a schema (RNC format, if you please) and skip the guesswork. --Joe English jenglish@f...
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