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RE: Objection to hexBinary and base64Binary

From: Charles Frankston <cbf@isovia.com>
Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2001 21:37:00 -0400
Message-ID: <1C7DC7A88C4CAA458BA6D12B3C21CDBF03DF86@enterprise.isovia.com>
To: <Noah_Mendelsohn@lotus.com>
Cc: <cmsmcq@acm.org>, <www-xml-schema-comments@w3.org>
Perhaps it would be better to say I object to allowing multiple syntaxes
for binary.  The variations for float are consistent with the operation
of traditional number parsers.  Allowing an alternative, hexidecimal
represenation, as was proposed at one point, would have been another
story entirely.  Btw, I think the variations on ISO8601 dates allow by
the spec are worse, but again, at least conform to a single (but
complex) syntax.

Actually, I would have been all in favor of defining all the
representations so precisely that no variation would be allowed.
99.9999% of the time these values will be interpreted by programs
without humans ever seeing them.  Yes, they should be a human readable
syntax because humans do read them during development and debugging.
But 1.0E2 would have been good enough for those who have to debug.
(Note that most business programs would probably choose a decimal
format, the representation of which would be more traditional.)  This
goes doubly for the dates where I think the many variations of 8601
create an undue burden on parsers.

-----Original Message-----
From: Noah_Mendelsohn@lotus.com [mailto:Noah_Mendelsohn@lotus.com]
Sent: Wednesday, April 25, 2001 10:04 AM
To: Charles Frankston
Cc: cmsmcq@acm.org; www-xml-schema-comments@w3.org
Subject: RE: Objection to hexBinary and base64Binary

Charles Frankston writes:

>> I cannot think of a requirement that is advanced 
>> by allowing multiple lexical representations for a 
>> single datatype.

Regardless of the pros and cons of the binary types, the case that we
I anyway) found most compelling is:

        100.0 == 1.0E2 == 0.1E3

for float.  Requiring exponential notation would seem to be the only 
consistent single lexical representation, and I don't think users prefer

that restriction.  That decision on float lets the cat out of the bag: 
having a single lexical rep. is not an invariant of the design.  We then

allowed in leading zeros, etc. as a reasonable convenience given that 
multiple reps are allowed in general.

Noah Mendelsohn                                    Voice: 1-617-693-4036
Lotus Development Corp.                            Fax: 1-617-693-8676
One Rogers Street
Cambridge, MA 02142
Received on Tuesday, 24 April 2001 21:37:36 UTC

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