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Re: To namespace or not to Namespace ....

  • From: "John L. Clark" <jlc6@po.cwru.edu>
  • To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
  • Date: Wed, 7 Apr 2010 11:23:22 -0400

Re:  To namespace or not to Namespace ....
On Wed, Apr 7, 2010 at 11:13 AM, Andrew Welch <andrew.j.welch@gmail.com> wrote:
> On 7 April 2010 13:49, Simon St.Laurent <simonstl@simonstl.com> wrote:
>> On 4/5/10 11:59 PM, Liam R E Quin wrote:
>>> If you don't have an ambiguity problem, the complexity of namespaces
>>> is simply unlikely to give you any benefit.
>> I'll agree with Liam, to the extent that I'd like to see that emblazoned on
>> a brass plaque somewhere in the XML Hall of Fame.
>> The opening "if" is important, of course.
> True.  However, can you be sure that somewhere down the line some
> other consumer of your markup won't come along?  The pain from
> retrofitting namespaces is much, much worse than coding them in from
> the start.

Yes; I always expect my XML to be combined in unexpected ways with
other dialects, and I am rarely disappointed.  This is actually one of
the thing I deeply appreciate about XML (and thus, the existence of
namespacing technology).  As a result, every dialect I develop ends up
in its own namespace.

> My suggestion would be to use a namespace, as it brands your markup
> and prevents problems down the line, and definitely use a prefix.
> Unprefixed namespaced xml can be a pain, but prefixed xml is no problem at all.

And here is where I get confused.  To a namespace-aware XML processor,
the existence of prefixes (or lack thereof) in the source is
irrelevant.  I don't feel any pressure to use namespace prefixes until
multiple dialects get combined, and then I tend to award the majority
dialect with prefix-freedom.  (A notable exception is XSLT, where I
like to emphasize the majority *output* dialect by placing it in the
default namespace.)

Take care,

    John L. Clark

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