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RE: TAG opinion on XML Binary Format

From: Cutler, Roger (RogerCutler) <RogerCutler@chevrontexaco.com>
Date: Tue, 24 May 2005 14:02:37 -0500
Message-ID: <0C237C50B244FD44BE47B8DCE23A30520C368E@HOU150NTXC2MC.hou150.chevrontexaco.net>
To: "Rice, Ed (HP.com)" <ed.rice@hp.com>, www-tag@w3.org, public-xml-binary@w3.org
It seems to me that the statement "such cases are relatively uncommon"
below is highly dubious, given the variety of usage cases documented by
the XBC workgroup.  However, the call for benchmarks seems reasonable to
me, as does the advice that such benchmarks should involve the "best
shot" for the text case.  One thing that is unclear to me, however --
does this "best shot" include the use of MTOM and XOP for binary
attachments?  If so, the distinction between text and binary becomes a
little unclear to me.  I must admit that as far as the usage case I
personally submitted to the XBC it seems to me that MTOM could probably
be made to "do the job", although a true binary standard would do it
more neatly and flexibly.  My understanding, however, is that there are
other usage cases for which MTOM won't really work, but it seems to me
that documenting this very clearly would be a good idea.
 
On a truly trivial note, do you think you could adjust your email client
so the line wraps work in my email client (Outlook)?  Your paragraphs
each display for me as one very long line.
 
-----Original Message-----
From: public-xml-binary-request@w3.org
[mailto:public-xml-binary-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Rice, Ed (HP.com)
Sent: Tuesday, May 24, 2005 12:26 PM
To: www-tag@w3.org; public-xml-binary@w3.org
Subject: TAG opinion on XML Binary Format


 
TAG opinion on XML Binary Format
 
The TAG has reviewed in detail the documents [1,2,3,4] prepared by the
XBC workgroup [5].  While we very much appreciate the significant
progress that these notes represent, the TAG believes that more detailed
analysis is needed before a W3C Binary XML Recommendation is
sufficiently justified.  We are taking no position at this time as to
whether Binary XML will prove to be warranted, as there seem to be good
arguments on both sides of that question.  Rather, we are suggesting
that further careful analysis is needed before the W3C commits to a
direction.
 
The TAG believes there are disadvantages as well as potential advantages
that will result from even a well crafted Binary XML Recommendation.
The advantages are clear: a successful binary format is likely to
provide speed gains or size reductions, at least for certain use cases.
The drawbacks are likely to include reduced interoperability with XML
1.0 and XML 1.1 software, and an inability to leverage the benefits of
text-based formats.  These are important concerns.  Quoting from the Web
Architecture document[6]:
 
   "The trade-offs between binary and textual data
   formats are complex and application-
   dependent. Binary formats can be substantially
   more compact, particularly for complex
   pointer-rich data structures. Also, they can be
   consumed more rapidly by agents in those cases
   where they can be loaded into memory and used
   with little or no conversion. Note, however,
   that such cases are relatively uncommon as such
   direct use may open the door to security issues
   that can only practically be addressed by
   examining every aspect of the data structure in
   detail.
 
   [snip] 
Received on Tuesday, 24 May 2005 19:04:54 UTC

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