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Minimum Processor Profiles and the XML Media Type

From: Alex Milowski <alex@milowski.org>
Date: Wed, 23 Jun 2010 13:34:49 +0100
Message-ID: <AANLkTikVlCprNJ5zbAU7DTN0lXwiYNX0prmulvSk0IBi@mail.gmail.com>
To: XProc WG <public-xml-processing-model-wg@w3.org>
Henry and I have had some useful discussions here in Edinburgh over
the last week and here is what we've come up with:

 1. As we tested, the web browsers are inconsistent wrt:

     * loading the external subset,
     * handling id/idref,
     * processing xml:base, xml:id, or xlink (Firefox does this,
       WebKit does some),
     * applying stylesheets via the xml-stylesheet processing
       instruction and having any/all of the above happen.

 2. There is no definitive specification for what a web browser
     should do with any XML media type wrt processing beyond
     the XML specification's well-formed constraints.

 3. There are possible grey areas within a well-formed processor
     wrt to ID/IDREF and other things.

 4. One interpretation of our charter is that the "default processing
     model" and our "XML Processor Profiles" should say exactly what
     web browsers "should" do with XML.  That way browser vendors
     have something to reference and conform against when it comes
     to XML processing.

     Maybe 3023bis [1] is the place to add a "User Agents *SHOULD*
     process XML media types as specified by the *Basic Profile*
     defined in [XPP]." or something to that effect.

     We should, of course, make both our specification and the
     suggested language for 3023bis as strong or as flexible as
     we think is appropriate.

  5. XMLHttpRequest specification should be a customer as well
      (see [2], particularly the Note).  There is an interesting
      distinction between the processing via a "data request" such as
      via XMLHttpRequest and the processing for rendering.  These are
      distinct and the XMLHttpRequest specification disallows styling,
      script execution, resource retrieval and other things that we might
      expect to happen when an XML document is rendered for display
      in a browser.

I'd like to discuss some of this on the call tomorrow if possible.

[1] http://www.w3.org/2006/02/son-of-3023/draft-murata-kohn-lilley-xml-02.html
[2] http://www.w3.org/TR/XMLHttpRequest/#xml-response-entity-body

--Alex Milowski
"The excellence of grammar as a guide is proportional to the paucity of the
inflexions, i.e. to the degree of analysis effected by the language

Bertrand Russell in a footnote of Principles of Mathematics
Received on Wednesday, 23 June 2010 12:35:22 UTC

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