Re: Element Structure for XML (Clause 7)

> From bsmith@atlantic-82.Eng.Sun.COM Wed Sep 11 17:23:02 1996
> Date: Wed, 11 Sep 1996 15:01:54 -0700
> From: bsmith@atlantic-82.Eng.Sun.COM (Bill Smith)
> To: paul@arbortext.com
> Subject: Re: Element Structure for XML (Clause 7)
> Paul Grosso wrote:
> > Let's remember that 95% of the time, a given document instance is going
> > to be read by the same tool that last wrote it.  Sure, interchange is
> > important, but allowing for user-friendly tools is too, and if we throw
> > out the only safe, unscary way to support tool-specific amenities, we
> > are really dooming ourselves to lowest common denominator standards of
> > useability.
> On the web, it's more likely that the tool used to view a document is not the 
> tool used to write it. 

But how many times did it go into and out of the authoring tool during
its creation, drafting, modifying, editing, proofing, etc. before it
got put up on the internet for viewing.

> PIs are not required to produce user-friendly tools. Tom Magliery's suggestion
> seems like a reasonable alternative. I think PIs are unnecessary.

First, comments are comments, and as Tom says, they are ignored by many
parsers.  Why be non-compliant with SGML for (what I perceive as) no good

Second, there are existing tools that use PIs as they were intended to
be used.  Why break them and ask them to use comments for what they
weren't intended?

Third, comments have at least as annoying "escaping" problems as PIs.
Do you know how often I try to type "--" in a long comment only to
have a parse error (unless I'm using Adept which tries to avoid this)?
The business about parsing -------- [that's 8 of them] in a comment
is certainly more of a pain than scanning text following <? for >.

Fourth, I still just don't get it.  What's so hard about PIs?


p.s.  My message header seems to indicate that Bill sent this only to me.
I hope I'm correct in assuming this was an oversight and that I'm not
breaching e-etiquette by resending this to the entire mailing list.