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XML 1.1 Permathread (was Re: Processing XML 1.1 documents ...)

XML 1.1 Permathread (was Re: Processing XML 1.1 documents ...)
On 5/15/05, Robin Berjon <robin.berjon@e...> wrote:

> I also think that you're blowing the interoperability issues of XML 1.1
> way out of proportion. If the people who rant that XML 1.1 is a CDK
> (CĂ©line Dion Karaoke) Level Event spent a tenth of the time they waste
> complaining about XML 1.1 on helping out with upgrades we'd be done
> already. Let us not forget the brilliant things that we the XML
> community have managed to produce over the past year. Surely the
> transition to XML 1.1 is a tractable problem...

I have a couple of problems with this argument.  First, the question
isn't really whether the additional language support and Unicode
alignment is a Good Thing or not, it's whether that goodness comes at
a reasonable cost. The brilliant things that XML accomplished were
built on the foundations of SGML and the Web, so the real cost wasn't
all that great.  The nice to have things that XML 1.1 promises don't
leverage much that is already out there, so it's pure cost for little
gain to 99.99% of current XML users.

Also,  as ERH has noted elsewhere, the W3C was told repeatedly exactly
what would happen if they went ahead with 1.1, they went ahead anyway,
and it's happening.  Big distraction at exactly the wrong time in
XML's lifecycle.  Just when the potential for real widespread data
interoperability is starting to get real, the W3C goes and throws sand
in the gears.  (With some poetic justice, most of the gears that are
gummed up are in the W3Cs machinery - XML1.1 is raising holy hell with
the other specs efforts!).

Finally, I have to say that I used to be firmly in the "quit whining,
Just Do It, and it will be done" camp but have come to realilze that
is is not nearly so simple.  I hate to do the "poor widdlul Microsoft"
thing that I used to find so annoying :-) but consider the fact that
MS has spent 8 years getting XML 1.0 installed on hundreds of millions
of computers.  It will easily take another 8 years to get XML 1.1 out
there, whether or not we stop whining on xml-dev. Sure, eventually
that infrastructure has to be upgraded/replaced for some future
evolution of XML, but is this really the time?  Does XML 1.1 offer
enough benefit to ask the installed base to deal with yet another
interop annoyance just when the others are starting to get cleaned up?
 How about we wait until there is a nice package of stuff to upgrade,
that offers real value to the masses, and the nits have been picked
and the bugs worked out, and THEN we roll out XML-NG?  2015 sounds
about right <duck>


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