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MyXAML Lead Weighs in on "What is XAML?" Debate

  • To: xml-dev@l...
  • Subject: MyXAML Lead Weighs in on "What is XAML?" Debate
  • From: Gerald Bauer <luxorxul@y...>
  • Date: Fri, 5 Nov 2004 21:29:40 -0500 (EST)


  Allow me to highlight Marc Clifton's (of MyXAML
fame) blog story titled "What Is XAML?" that
highlights some more "XAML is" definitions.

   Marc comments:

  What's interesting about these definitions is:

  * There appears to be confusion regarding whether
XAML can be applied to any object or is intended to
work with UI classes;

  * While everyone appears to agree that it is a
"language", no one recognizes that the markup is also
dependent upon a parser which introduces syntax
specialization (Drew Marsh eludes to this point though
when he mentions complex properties).  That is to say,
the parser plays a significant role in the definition
of the language and XAML as a "language" loses some of
its generic features because Microsoft's "parser"
implements specialized syntactical constructs, of
which I have already written about.;

  * While I'm on the subject of "language", let's also
remember that the element tags and property names in
XAML are mapped to classes in the associated
namespace. Therefore, XAML is an open-ended language
as it applies (with notable exception) to any .NET
class, past, present, and future.  That is, unless the
parser is written to work with only specific
namespaces and classes;

  * What the generic definition fails to recognize is
that not all classes are created equally.  I've
written about it before and I'll remind everyone
again, many third party vendors do not make their
classes particularly declarative (i.e. XAML) friendly.
 Some of the definitions above give you the cozy
feeling that XAML will work with any .NET class.  This
is not true;

  So, that said, and having said in the past that
MyXaml isn't XAML, now I'm sure you're wondering how I
would define MyXaml.  Here's the definition:

  MyXaml is a general purpose XML parser that maps
elements to class instantiation, attributes to
property/event assignments, and sub-elements to
collections and concrete instance assignment, allowing
the programmer to declaratively instantiate an object
graph utilizing compliant .NET classes with minimal
parser-specific syntactical requirements, accomplished
using the runtime reflection and type converter
features of C# and .NET.

  Note that:

  * I do not say MyXaml is a language but rather a
  * I indicate it works only with compliant classes
  * I indicate that the parser itself introduces only
minimal syntactical specialization

   More @

   - Gerald 

Gerald Bauer
Rich Client Conference (RichCon) 2005 -
XUL News Wire - http://xulnews.com
XUL Alliance - http://xulalliance.org

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