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Re: MicroXML

  • From: Michael Kay <mike@saxonica.com>
  • To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
  • Date: Thu, 16 Dec 2010 10:23:01 +0000

Re:  MicroXML
On 16/12/2010 09:37, David Carlisle wrote:
> On 16/12/2010 08:15, rjelliffe wrote:
>> So is that IMDB behaviour being adopted by HTML5, too?
> yes

This is really scary. One guy makes a spelling mistake in his HTML and 
the rest of us pay the price, just because his site is popular. This 
can't be a sane way forward.

Back in about 1998, I was piggy-in-the-middle in a quarrel between a big 
bank and Microsoft. Microsoft's first XML parser allowed </> as an end 
tag, and the bank wrote a system that relied on this. Then W3C decided 
not to allow this, Microsoft changed their parser accordingly, and the 
bank was threatening to sue them for the costs incurred by a 2-month 
delay to their systems going live, which they reckoned was about $1bn. 
Fortunately for everyone, Microsoft didn't budge, and the bank were 
persuaded that by using unratified standards they had been taking a risk 
and had to accept the consequences.

Bending the standard because of a mistake made by one user, however 
important they are, is surely increasing the lifetime cost to the 
community rather than decreasing it. It feels like a bad decision.

Michael Kay

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