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xml.com piece on XML Schema datatypes

From: Dan Brickley <danbri@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 1 Aug 2002 16:49:21 -0400 (EDT)
To: <w3c-rdfcore-wg@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0208011642050.1842-100000@tux.w3.org>

Thought this might be of interest re datatypes discussion. It's pretty
critical, but makes some specific technical claims and offers a counter

Since we're supposed to be hooking RDF up to XML Schema datatypes, it's
probably worth taking a look at feedback (including negative feedback)
from implementors who have been working with it. On which front, it might
also be worth noting the 'XML Schema 1.1 - you can help!' notice at
http://www.w3.org/XML/Schema and the associated feedback list at


Not My Type: Sizing Up W3C XML Schema Primitives
By Amelia Lewis
Continuing our occasional series of opinion pieces from members of the
XML community, Amy Lewis takes a hard look at W3C XML Schema datatypes.
Since the application of XML to data representation first gained public
visibility, there has been a movement to enhance its type system beyond
originally provided by DTD. Several attempts were made (SOX, XML Data and
Data Reduced, Datatypes for DTDs, and others) before the W3C handed the
problem to the XML Schema Working Group.

a brief excerpt:

There are two fundamental problems with WXS datatyping.  The first is its
design: it's not a type system -- there is no system -- and not even a
collection. Rather, it's a collection of collections of types with no
or consistent set of interrelations.  The second problem is a single
in the specification: "Primitive datatypes can only be added by revisions
this specification". This sentence exists because of the design problem;
lacking a concept for what a primitive data type is, the only way to
new types is by appeal to authority.  The data type library is wholly
inextensible, internally inconsistent, bloated in and incomplete for most
application domains.
Received on Thursday, 1 August 2002 16:49:22 UTC

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