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Re: Need a language whiz: An XML Schema "specifies" how data i

  • From: Michael Kay <mike@saxonica.com>
  • To: bryan rasmussen <rasmussen.bryan@gmail.com>
  • Date: Wed, 3 Jan 2018 16:24:55 +0000

Re:  Need a language whiz: An XML Schema "specifies" how data i
The essence of the semantics of XSD is that the specification defines a process, variously called "validation" or "assessment", that takes a schema and an instance document as input and produces an assessment outcome as its result.

assess(schema, instance) => outcome

(It's slightly more complicated than that because you can specify other inputs to the assessment, e.g. strict/lax).

The specification does not use any specific term (such as "describes" or "constrains") for the relationship between a schema and the set of instance documents for which assessment has an outcome labeled "valid". You're perfectly welcome to use a term such as "describes" for this relationship if you wish, but it's not a term-of-art in XSD itself; so if you use it, you should say carefully what you mean by it.

Michael Kay

> On 3 Jan 2018, at 14:40, bryan rasmussen <rasmussen.bryan@gmail.com> wrote:
> The word choices betray viewpoints of reality -
> stating or specifying how data is to be structured assumes a blank
> canvas and the schema tells you how that canvas may be filled
> constrains assumes that data is a realm of many, perhaps infinite
> possibilities, XML Schema then constrains or limits the possible to
> the manageable.
> I am a specifying how data is to be structured man myself.
> On Mon, Nov 13, 2017 at 2:13 PM, Costello, Roger L. <costello@mitre.org> wrote:
>> Hi Folks,
>> Which of the following is most accurate and why?
>> An XML Schema specifies how data is to be structured.
>> An XML Schema describes how data is to be structured.
>> An XML Schema states how data is to be structured.
>> An XML Schema constrains the structure of data.
>> An XML Schema structures data.
>> An XML Schema describes data.
>> An XML Schema constrains data.
>> Other (what?)
>> /Roger
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