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Re: WAI: Threat or Menace?

From: <noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com>
Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2002 21:42:19 -0400 (EDT)
Message-ID: <OF110411E5.052E9B41-ON85256C1C.000818D2@lotus.com>
To: "C. Bottelier" <c.bottelier@iradis.org>
Cc: www-style@w3.org, www-tag@w3.org



Whatever the other merits of this discussion, I think it's worth pointing 
out that many XML documents are not and will not be intended for easy 
human reading and editing, regardless of the human in question.  So, any 
discussion of accessibility of XML documents should, I think, focus on 
that subset of documents that one would reasonably want humans to read or 
directly manipulate.  I don't find XML database dumps, schemas, WSDL 
documents, SOAP messages, etc., etc. to be particular optimized for 
interpretation by or direct presentation to humans.  Just to find the 
chain of base types for a derived type from a schema document:  trivial 
for a computer, very messy for a human.  It wasn't a design goal for those 
formats and the results show it.

That said, I think it is indeed a reasonable and important goal that  >> 
to the extent practical, any particular document or class of document 
should be equally accessible to all human readers and editors.<<  For some 
documents that will mean:  very readable and accessible; for other 
documents it will mean very inconvenient to read.   Much XML is intended 
to be read and manipulated primarily by machine.

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Noah Mendelsohn                              Voice: 1-617-693-4036
IBM Corporation                                Fax: 1-617-693-8676
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Cambridge, MA 02142
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Received on Wednesday, 21 August 2002 11:31:45 GMT

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