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ORA-XQ-122-E: "element content" is a defined term with a conflicting meaning in XML 1.0

From: Stephen Buxton <Stephen.Buxton@oracle.com>
Date: 17 Feb 04 08:25:15
Message-Id: <200402171625.i1HGPF207518@rgmgw6.us.oracle.com>
To: public-qt-comments@w3.org
Cc:

SECTION 3.7.1.4: whitespace in element content

This section uses the phrase "element content", which is a term
defined in XML 1.0 section 3.2.1 "element content" as
"[Definition: An element type has element content when elements 
of that type must contain only child elements (no character
data), optionally separated by white space (characters matching
the nonterminal S.]".  The XQuery working draft, on the other 
hand, has no definition for "element content", either explicitly
or by reference to XML 1.0.  It seems in the present section
that your use of "element content" is not the same as the 
definition in XML 1.0.  For one thing, XML 1.0 uses the phrase
"element content" only with reference to validated XML, whereas
you use it only with reference to the result of a direct
element constructor, which is unvalidated.  I think you mean 
"the content of an element" whereas XML 1.0 means "content 
which consists solely of elements and whitespace".  

I grant that your use of "element 
content" is probably closer to ordinary English usage than XML 
1.0's, but having two conflicting meanings for the same phrase 
in these two specifications will be very confusing.  There will
be dialogs in which one person means the XML 1.0 meaning and 
the other person means the XQuery meaning, and the two people will
have to go through a lot of discussion before they realize they are
not using the words to mean the same thing.  There will be 
people who misunderstand the XQuery specification because of 
prior familiarity with XML 1.0, and vice versa.  Since XML 1.0
is already a recommendation, I suggest you find some other phrase,
such as "content of an element", and avoid "element content".

- Steve B.
Received on Tuesday, 17 February 2004 11:25:19 UTC

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