How XML is defined

At 06:18 AM 9/14/96 -0400, Paul Prescod wrote:

>Won't it be a Lot of Work to define something which is SGML-Like but does
>not require a DTD? I had presumed that XML would be defined like this:
>"An XML document is a valid SGML document which..."

Absolutely not.  Check out out clause #8 in our current "design goals"
statement (http://www.textuality.com/sgml-erb/dd-1996-0001.html).  (By
the way, the content of that document is fair game for arguments, it's
not written in the stars).  But at the moment it says that the XML spec has
to be formal and concise, and not exceed 20 pages.  It doesn't seem fair
to tell someone who wants to write an XML spec that first he has to understand
the SGML spec, then a set of deltas.  Yes, I think it's possible to
come up with a rigorous formal specification for XML in something that size,
and (here is the hard part) make the documents it generates a strict subset
of those generated by 8879 rules.

Cheers, Tim Bray
tbray@textuality.com http://www.textuality.com/ +1-604-488-1167