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Re: Opaque data, XML, and SOAP

From: Ray Whitmer <rayw@netscape.com>
Date: Tue, 11 Mar 2003 06:48:42 -0700
Cc: "'John J. Barton'" <John_Barton@hpl.hp.com>, <xml-dist-app@w3.org>
To: <eugene@datapower.com>
Message-Id: <2BF7BF16-53C8-11D7-BE1F-000393676776@netscape.com>

On Tuesday, March 11, 2003, at 06:21 AM, Eugene Kuznetsov wrote:

[...]

> Interestingly, all the discussion focus here is on the on-the-wire
> encoding issues -- doesn't seem that anyone feels strongly that binary
> data should be passed by reference in some external envelope?

What is obvious to me is that the infoset is a very poor place to carry 
large binary data.

An external envelope is the only other option for SOAP because the 
designers insisted upon an sub-XML/infoset envelope.

The better choice would have been to place orthogonal modules into 
separate parts of a better envelope mechanism, which would have:

1.  Still permitted all parts for which XML was the preferred language 
to be XML, with URI-based relationships to other parts.
2.  Avoided requiring subsetted XML on all contents of the envelope, 
permitting content types such as XHTML, MathML, SVG, etc. to be proper 
attachments within the envelope.
4.  Made it easier to skip modules within the envelope in the stream 
without worrying about XML-parsing everything.
5.  Made it much easier to deal with binary attachments.
6.  Made it more-possible to process the infoset using existing tools.
...
etc.

Remaking everything to fit SOAP as a general-purpose envelope seems like 
a bad idea.

Ray Whitmer
Received on Tuesday, 11 March 2003 08:48:47 GMT

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