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Re: On subsetting XML...

From: Norman Walsh <Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM>
Date: Fri, 17 Jan 2003 10:42:11 -0500
To: www-tag@w3.org
Message-ID: <87wul3zsto.fsf@nwalsh.com>

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/ "Bullard, Claude L (Len)" <clbullar@ingr.com> was heard to say:
| Umm, Norm, if I and a group of like minded 
| folks are determined to subset DOCBOOK 
| (done all the time), should you be obliged 
| to document and support those subsets?

No, but in fact so many like minded folks asked for one that the DocBook Technical
Committee did create it: http://www.oasis-open.org/docbook/xml/simple/1.0/

| in that direction.  I see some probability of 
| a disaster if the code bases of core XML 
| processors are forked to support the semantic 
| restrictions of one or a few applications.

I thought one of the principle arguments in favor of creating a common
subset was to reduce the amount of forking that would occur.

I see things like this:

I can imagine that there are or will be a dozen or more groups that
feel full XML 1.1 is a bad fit for their application. Doctypes,
processing instructions, comments, whetever their beef is, it doesn't
matter. XML 1.1 is a large enough target that they will probably be
able to get support in their community for defining a subset.

They aren't going to define identical subsets. And so they're going to
write or fork the code for the parsers and tools that they use to
support their subset and no one else's.

If there's an official subset that's "small enough", I think they
might reach the conclusion that "it's not an ideal subset for us, but
it's close enough, let's use that" and avoid forking endlessly.

I don't see *any* evidence that SOAP is going to fail to reach PR
because it doesn't support doctype declarations or PIs. And so the
forking *will* occur. I'd like to stem the tide before it overflows
all the barricades.

                                        Be seeing you,
                                          norm

[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-tag/2003Jan/0212.html

- -- 
Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM    | The First Amendment is often inconvenient.
XML Standards Architect | But that is besides the point. Inconvenience
Web Tech. and Standards | does not absolve the government of its
Sun Microsystems, Inc.  | obligation to tolerate speech.--Justice
                        | Anthony Kennedy, in 91-155
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Received on Friday, 17 January 2003 10:43:06 GMT

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