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Re: RE: James Clark: XML versus the Web

  • From: Gavin Thomas Nicol <gtn@rbii.com>
  • To: XML List Developers <xml-dev@lists.xml.org>
  • Date: Tue, 7 Dec 2010 00:26:58 -0500

Re:  RE: James Clark: XML versus the Web
> DOM was necessary at the time - you needed a way for external languages to
> have low level access to XML in order to create tools (such as XPath,
> XQuery, E4X, etc.) that provided higher level accessibility. The problem was
> that rather than build XPath or E4X like layers into the browsers, the
> browser implementers took the DOM spec as the baseline for working with XML,
> and it took years for any kind of advanced technology to work its way into
> even a few of the systems (and that often badly).

That's actually more or less ass-backward. DOM came from trying to take what browsers *did* do and shoehorn it into something that could possibly work with XML and HTML. Most of the idiocy existed *before* the DOM WG even had a spec. or was foisted off onto the WG later in the game. 

The DOM was actually successful in that it gave birth (albeit painfully and over a long period of time along with cohorts like ECMAScript) to a relatively standard programming environment in the browser that then led to all kinds of things, including, ultimately JSON, AJAX et al. More than anything else, the DOM effort was about creating a standard *browser* API, not a standard *document* API. The "Document Object Model" is a misnomer.

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