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Re: Is XML-Link Rocket Science?



bosak@atlantic-83.Eng.Sun.COM (Jon Bosak) writes:
>| Will a full implementation of XML plus all of its final component
>| technologies (link, dsssl-o stylesheets, catalog support, etc.)
>| require the likes of James Clark to make a complete system? It's fine
>| that the W3C SGML Working Group Reference Implementation do the job,
>| but if it's become another SP then we have another SP: an absolutely
>| phenomenal tool, but an enormous hurdle for developers to create from
>| scratch. If validation of XML is as complicated as SGML, then what is
>| the point of differentiating it from SGML?
>
>Because you don't need validation for XML to be useful.  XML makes
>possible a very large number of lightweight applications that only
>need to know that a document is well-formed.

I don't deny this -- it's obviously one of the reasons we're all excited
about XML. But as has been pointed out in various messages, building
authoring tools that validate, that provide the level of link markup
complexity to support current proposals, that provide either CSS or DSSSL-O
support, these all may obtain a hefty development effort. I know simply
adding CSS support to the Stonehand HTML Viewer was not a trivial effort.
But I'm not worried about browsers -- they certainly seem trivial by
comparison to what is required by an authoring tool.

I suspect most authoring tools will do well-formedness checking but not
validation, and therefore some of the XML advantages over HTML may be lost.
In my head I'm trying to get a handle on an ideal balance between a simple
and fully-supported authoring tool, and what developing that would entail.

Murray

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    Murray Altheim, Program Manager
    Spyglass, Inc., Cambridge, Massachusetts
    email: <mailto:murray@spyglass.com>
    http:  <http://www.cm.spyglass.com/murray/murray.html>
           "Give a monkey the tools and he'll eventually build a typewriter."