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RE: XHTML 2 Working Group won't be renewed?

  • From: "Michael Kay" <mike@saxonica.com>
  • To: "'Andrew Welch'" <andrew.j.welch@gmail.com>,"'XML Developers List'" <xml-dev@l...>
  • Date: Thu, 9 Jul 2009 09:53:12 +0100

RE:  XHTML 2 Working Group won't be renewed?
> - I would allow the use of the namespace directly, eg 
> <com.mycomp:elem> instead of forcing the definition of a 
> prefix <m:elem xmlns="com.mycomp">

There's actually a debate going on in the XSLT/XQuery groups at the moment
about allowing a syntax for QNames (for example in XPath expressions and in
places in XSLT where QNames are used at run-time) that consists of the URI
and local-name, without requiring a prefix. Finding the right syntax is not
easy. I think it needs to work with all namespace names, which certainly
includes all legal IRIs and possibly includes all strings. Clark notation
{uri}local is one candidate, though the curly braces cause problems in some
contexts such as XSLT attribute value templates. I've been proposing
backticks: `uri`local or `uri`:local but there's a fair bit of opposition to
that on aesthetic grounds. (Curly braces and backticks are some of the few
characters that are illegal in IRIs).

I would certainly like to see such a notation gradually become acceptable in
all contexts where QNames are used, including element and attribute names in
lexical XML. I suspect it also needs to be distinguishable from the
prefix:local-name form, to allow mixing of both forms.

Allowing :elem to refer to a name in no namespace would also seem a useful
(and compatible) step forward.

If only people had restricted namespaces to use the syntax of XML names,
this would all be so much easier!


Michael Kay

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