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RE: Six Reasons Not to use XML Attributes

  • From: "Len Bullard" <Len.Bullard@ses-i.com>
  • To: "Christopher R. Maden" <crism@maden.org>,<xml-dev@l...>
  • Date: Fri, 2 Mar 2012 12:03:33 -0600

RE:  Six Reasons Not to use XML Attributes
It's a good theory but in practice (to paraphrase, "theory is what we
know but can't use; practice is what we do but can't prove"), attributes
are used for displayable content, a simple example being the TM numbers
in the mil-spec doc headers.

pubno="DTM 1-1520-280-13"

Which goes to the point there are so far no rules for using these for
which there are no exceptions.  Therefore as Mike said, no right answers
although as added, some good reasons.

The problems I hit are seldom using these or not but the secret decoder
ring knowledge someone needs to apply them correctly in situations where
the DTD does not actually govern the final output (say XSLT
contributions) or they are badly documented (say almost any DTD of some
size and age).


From: Christopher R. Maden [mailto:crism@maden.org] 

There is still a presumption in XML default processing (e.g., the XSLT
default templates) that content is visible and attributes are not.  When
working with machine interchange languages, this doesn't matter, but for
human documents, it is a good principle to follow.

Chris Maden, text nerd  <URL: http://crism.maden.org/ >
"Be wary of great leaders.  Hope that there are many, many small
 leaders." - Pete Seeger

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