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RE: XML observation

From: Brian McBride <bwm@hplb.hpl.hp.com>
Date: 04 Jul 2003 12:07:33 +0100
To: Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com
Cc: phayes@ihmc.us, rdf core <w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org>, duerst@w3.org
Message-Id: <1057316852.2673.120.camel@dhcp-91-136.hpl.hp.com>

On Fri, 2003-07-04 at 08:41, Patrick.Stickler@nokia.com wrote:


> These tensions come to a head in cases such as RDF/XML when you 
> use XML as a markup formalism for a data structure which encapsulates 
> data that itself uses XML as a markup formalism for document modelling, 
> since, as Pat points out, XML itself fails to provide any 
> distinction between the encapsulation and the encapsulated.

Aye, here seems to be the (a?) nub; the distinction between a fragment
of XML being part of a document and being embedded (is 'quoted' a better
term) in it.  It is well known that XML has trouble embedding XML inside
itself - entities being another case in point.

We need to be sure everyone understands what is being said here.  Feel
free to improve on the following.


This sentence, which refers to the French sentence "La plume de am tante
est rouge." is in English.

This sentence is true, even though it contains a French sentence,
because the French sentence is referred to in the sentence, but is not
part of it.

I don't think XML has such a mechanism for quoting bits of XML such as
in the above sentence, so that contextual attributes such as xml base
and xml lang don't apply inside them.  Patrick is arguing, I think, that
parseType="Literal" is such a mechanism introduced into RDF/XML.


> An RDF literal is precisely that, a *literal*. It should not
> be infected with the contextual characteristics of the language
> used to describe the data structures which encapsulate it.

Martin has argued that it should and spelled out his reasons which I
summarized in:


It would be helpful if you could spell out the arguments for why a
parseType="Literal" fragment should not inherit xml:lang from its

Received on Friday, 4 July 2003 07:07:55 UTC

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