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Re: New DOM Level 2 Working Draft

From: <keshlam@us.ibm.com>
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 1999 12:05:37 -0400
To: www-dom@w3.org
Message-ID: <852567FA.0058708B.00@D51MTA03.pok.ibm.com>
Quoth Stephen R. Savitzky:
> Can one pick and choose in this way, and
> still say you have "an API to this information set"?

The Infoset is still a Working Draft, and the standard W3C boilerplate says
     It is inappropriate to use W3C Working Drafts as reference material or to
     cite them as other than "work in progress."
So statements about consistancy with it should be taken as indications of
intent; they aren't yet testable, since the Infoset may still be redesigned at
any moment.

The DOM itself is still a work in progress, and doesn't yet do everything people
want it to. That's why Level 3 is being planned, and I expect further levels
beyond that -- though I've started raising questions about whether some of the
proposed functions really should be placed in the DOM rather than having their
own API. I wouldn't call that "picking and choosing", except in the short-term
sense of trying to set priorities for what gets worked on next.

No, DTD/schema support did not make it into Level 2. We regret that, but that's
how it happened to work out. DTD support, and as much of schema as we can
reasonably address, is one of the top priorities for Level 3.

Ignorable whitespace is an open issue. Knowing what's ignorable and what isn't
requires that the document be processed in the context of a DTD, so you can
distinguish element or text content from mixed content. We could provide a flag
that parsers would set, but making that flag continue to work as the document is
altered -- as the Text node is moved into a new context, for example -- would
then require custom solutions. It does make a certain amount of sense to wait
until we can do this properly, by making that flag aware of the content model.

If we had it all to do over again, I'd want Infoset complete (with namespaces
and datatypes and schemas and so on) before folks nailed down XML's syntax,
never mind the DOM. But when dancing on the leading edge, some of the parts you
want just won't be ready in time; all you can do is prioritize and go forward
incrementally.

<smile>Have patience please; keep raising the issues and helping us understand
where the priorities are, but be aware that we're already making mistakes just
as fast as we can...</smile>
______________________________________
Joe Kesselman  / IBM Research
Received on Tuesday, 28 September 1999 12:06:45 GMT

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