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Re: DTD Confusion

From: Juergen Reuter <reuter@ira.uka.de>
Date: Thu, 08 Feb 2001 14:58:28 +0100
To: Ron Jacobs <rjacobs@gforce.com>
cc: reuter@ira.uka.de, ietf-dav-versioning@w3.org
Message-ID: <"iraun1.ira.0054601:010208.135835"@ira.uka.de>
> I also agree that DTDs can and should be avoided. Let's not forget that
> DTDs originated in an era when most SGML documents were created by
> humans. WebDAV clients and servers do not need to deal with DTDs.

WebDAV/DeltaV clients and servers are also created by humans.  And the
WebDAV and DeltaV protocol are created by humans.  I already found a
couple of bugs in the WebDAV protocol specification just by trying to
validate the examples that are given in the protocol (just have a look at
the open issues list for WebDAV!).  And there are frequent messages on
(at least) the WebDAV versioning list about strange message content
produced by various servers and clients.  I am pretty sure that, if we
were using valid XML, we would have much less trouble.

Please note that (as far as I know) no one is trying to force
implementers to validate WebDAV/DeltaV XML content.  What is requested
here, is to give implementers the possibility to validate the content in
a way that conforms with the XML specification, if they choose to do some

> Any "invalid" XML within requests or responses indicate (at best) a
> lack of conformance to specifications or (at worst) a bug

A bug in the specification itself is even worse, since it may lead to
different opinions about which behaviour is conformant.  And, recognizing
all those messages about problems with WebDAV clients and servers, bugs
in WebDAV client/server applications seem to be anything but seldom; so
it is very likely that you really want some kind of validation.

Received on Thursday, 8 February 2001 09:05:23 UTC

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