W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-sgml-wg@w3.org > September 1996

client/server XML (was Re: Marked Sections)

From: <streich@austin.sar.slb.com>
Date: Thu, 12 Sep 96 13:20:46 CDT
Message-Id: <9609121820.AA05726@odie>
To: w3c-sgml-wg@w3.org
> At 06:48 PM 9/10/96 +0100, Martin Bryan wrote:
> 
> >10.4
> >Marked sections are useful in DTDs (a la HTML and TEI) but it might be valid
> >to ban them within transmitted document instances conforming to XML. (XML
> >should really be for the transmission of version independent documents.
> >RCDATA should have its entities resolved before tranmission and with CDATA
> >should have any embedded markup delimiters replaced by character references.)
> 
> There's been no discussion of this, and early voting results do not show a
> trend.  Marked sections clearly complicate parser construction, and I don't
> think they are useful enough to make up for this and get into XML.
> 
> I think if you need this kind of sophistication, you should use Real SGML.
 
I think that Martin has raised an interesting point here: Is it worthwhile
to pursue client-XML and server-XML? Rather than saying "you should use
Real SGML" should there be a variant subset of XML that is on the server
side with a clear and straightforward transform to XML for a client?
Server-side parsing could be slightly more complex to allow us to retain
more of the "hard" but really useful features like the two mentioned above
but still provide server builders with a formal benchmark short of "full"
SGML.

The two examples that Martin mentions are near and dear to my heart. Declared
content is, unfortunately, essential since we use CDATA elements for our
equations. We use TeX as the markup language since the current set of
equation editors just makes it so easy for people to create an equation
and literally copy via the clipboard straight into the document. I feel
pretty safe with CDATA since the likelihood of finding "</" in the markup
is infinitessimally small. Safer methods would seriously affect the ease
of use.

TeX is just one example of a foreign notation that is useful to stick into
your SGML document. How about Java? I haven't (I'm pained to admit) looked
at any Java code yet, but I would guess that it would have some character
combinations in it that would be recognized as markup in PCDATA. It would
make it tougher on the authors to have to change all of these "problem"
combinations every time that wanted to include a chunk of code.

I'm not sure yet whether I like the idea of client/server XML. Just thought
I'd propose a "divide and conquer" option.


Robert Streich			streich@slb.com
Schlumberger			512-331-3318 (voice)
Austin Research			512-331-3760 (fax)
Received on Thursday, 12 September 1996 14:21:15 EDT

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