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Re: C.4 Undeclared entities?

From: David G. Durand <dgd@cs.bu.edu>
Date: Tue, 29 Oct 1996 15:04:49 -0500
Message-Id: <v02130502ae9bc6c8616d@[]>
To: w3c-sgml-wg@w3.org
At 10:43 PM 10/28/96, Charles F. Goldfarb wrote:
>On Mon, 28 Oct 1996 10:55:18 -0500, gtn@ebt.com (Gavin Nicol) wrote:
>>Entity references can be (even often are) a form of transclusion.
>>I cannot see why the XML syntax specification should have anything to
>>say on the uses the market finds for the mechnisms defined.
>I think there is some confusion between the concept of referencing an entity,
>and the SGML syntactic construct called an "entity reference". SGML has
>two ways
>to reference entities: by entity references (&entname; or %entname;) and by
>attribute values. Each method is used for a different type of entity.

There is no confision, just a difference of opinion as to whether the SGMl
semantics are useful. As long as we meet the syntactic restrictions of
8879, we are fine. As far as to _when_ an entity is parsed, the only reason
it matters _in XML_ is when validating. Therefore we need not honor the
restrictions on processing that you claim are mandated by 8879. (The
preceeding convoluted sentence expresses my impression that 8879 does not
mandate _when_ processing occur; In parallel, it asserts my opinion that
_even if it did_ we should not care).

>Syntactic entity references refer only to integral and invariant parts of the
>*source* document (which means they are parsed). Attributes refer to data
>entities that an application can choose to include in the *output*
>document, but
>never the source document.

We need not honor these intentions of 8879. If we meet the simple condition
that it is possible to generate a valid parse according to 8879, we have
discharged our obligations. Entities that expand when you want them to are
useful, so we need to address them on that basis. They do not, as far as I
can tell, affect the validity of processing the same entities with an SGML
processor, so we can do it if we want.

Let's stick to the facts of syntax, and usefulness and stop trying to
preserve the original SGML processing model, as opposed to the syntax (and
as much of ESIS as we find useful).

>Transclusions accessed via a general entity reference (meaning &entname;)
>violate 8879.

Prose to support this contention please? That would be prose prohibiting
_when the data can be parsed_. The validation conditions for XML and SGML
are obviously already divergent, so that need not concern us unduly.

>Transclusions accessed through an attribute value do not violate 8879.


   -- David

RE delenda est.
I am not a number. I am an undefined character.
David Durand              dgd@cs.bu.edu  \  david@dynamicDiagrams.com
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Received on Tuesday, 29 October 1996 15:04:54 UTC

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