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Re: [Fwd: The problems with Xlink for integration langu ages]


xlink diseases
Elliotte Rusty Harold <elharo@m...> wrote:

| To some extent this is tying back to the perennial attributes vs. 
| child elements thread. Here I'm beginning to notice that maybe 
| attributes never were right for a lot of the things they were used 
| for in HTML. 

Indeed.  The href disease, which is still pandemic.  There was a chance a
long time ago to get it right, but when the issue came up, the decisive
argument was missed[1,2,3], perhaps because a correct alternative - among
more than one - had been proposed for only circumstantial reasons, which
got shot down pretty easily.  (The point lost: placing a URI in an entity
declaration or in a dedicated element makes it referenceable through the
entity name or the element ID.)

The XLink prescription of complex links only through subelements actually
combines Good Design with dogma.  The XLink extended form is a variation
on HyTime's varlink, the principal difference having to do with the href
disease as a "shortcut" through HyTime's indirect addressing mechanisms.
But XLink has no analog of the hylink/ilink forms, where the notion of
multiple locators in a single element *is* supported.[4] 

I'm not sure HLink is the way to fill that gap, but the gap is there, and
HLink could be the start of a way to fill it.

[1]http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-talk/1992MayJun/0020.html
[2]http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-talk/1992MayJun/0038.html
[3]http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-talk/1992MayJun/0042.html
[4]http://www.ornl.gov/sgml/wg8/docs/n1920/html/clause-8.2.html

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