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Comments on REC-xml-19980210

From: John D. Ramsdell <ramsdell@linus.mitre.org>
Date: Tue, 17 Feb 1998 07:49:05 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <199802171249.HAA00903@ramet.mitre.org>
To: xml-editor@w3.org
CC: ramsdell@linus.mitre.org, john@linus.mitre.org, bede@linus.mitre.org, pc@linus.mitre.org
Over the weekend, I studied the 10 Feb 98 version the Extensible
Markup Language (XML) 1.0 as formatted in PostScript.  I have enclosed
my comments on this draft.


[General Comments]

It appears that the XML standard was written by people with a strong
background in SGML.  As a result, the XML standard document sometimes
fails to specify some parts of XML that are obvious to someone with a
background in SGML.  For example, I could find no specification of the
scope of an element declaration, but I'm sure someone familiar with
DTD's in SGML knows the answer.

[Section 2.1, Page 3, Second ordered list, Bullet 2]

This item refers to concepts such as "in the content of", start-tag,
and end-tag before the concepts are defined.  The concept of a
well-formed document seems to most naturally fit after page 10
introduces the concept of start-tags, end-tags, and empty element

[Section 2.7, Page 5]

The text on CDATA Sections should include an example of how to include
the character string "]]>" within a CDATA section.  If only "]]>" is
markup, one cannot write "]]&gt;".  Is that right?

[Section 2.12, Page 8]

The section on language identification is interesting, but I fail to
understand why it is included in the XML specification.  It seems me
to be a suggestion on how to write DTDs rather than specifying the XML
language and the behavior of its parsers.

[Section 3.2, Page 11]

The scope of an element declaration is not defined.  As I understand
it, you can use an element in another element declaration before it is
defined.  This fact should be explicitly stated.

[Section 4.2, Page 17]

The scope of general and parameter element declarations is not
defined.  As I understand it, you must define an element before it is
referenced.  This fact should be explicitly stated.  Oddly enough, I
thought for sure the scope of these entities was explicitly and
carefully defined in previous drafts of the XML standard.  Maybe I
missed the relevant text.

[Section 4.2.2, Page 18]

For those without an SGML background, the section on public
identifiers is simply mysterious.

[Section 4.4.5, Page 22]

The example with parameter reference appears to have a typo.

<!ENTITY WhatHeSaid "He said &YN;">

should be

<!ENTITY WhatHeSaid "He said %YN;">

[End of comments]
Received on Tuesday, 17 February 1998 07:49:37 UTC

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