Re: 7. Attribute remapping?

At 12:33 PM -0800 3/4/97, Tim Bray wrote:
>We have decided that we will allow the use of any old GI's on XML linking
>elements, identifying by the use of reserved attribute names and values.
>We will be specifying the use of some attributes to support XML linking.
>Do we need to allow them to be remapped as well, so that when an
>HTML doc says HREF= and a TEI doc says PTR=, they can mean the same

Probably. I wish not though.
>If we don't do this, then either we call all locator attributes HREF=
>or we take a terrible loss in selling this to the web-folk.

True. And I dislike HREF enough that that is almost reason enough to add
attribute remapping. Given that no common convention for the attribute
names is currently in use in SGML, allowing attribute remapping would make
dealing with old documents and DTDs much easier.

This is why I think we probalby have to do it.

>Eve suggested a mechanism for this in
> http://www.doctools.com/xml-link.html
>This involves pulling apart lists of things in attribute values.  Yecch.

Not so yecch like really. I'd be temtped to change the syntax she suggested
to use an = or something so that the direction of remapping was clearer
(and the organization into pairs more obxious). EG:

xmlnames="ptr=href captions=labels"
would mean that the PTR attribute role will be filled by an attribute
called "href" and the captions role by one called "labels". Eve also had
the pairs in the opposite order, but I find that the old=new is more
analogous to attlist definitions. Of course, it's less analogous to
assignment statements, so maybe we can't win. An arrow ":=" or "<-" or
something would maybe make things clearer but it's too yucky... I'm not
even sure about the "="...

I think one attribute, or one PI, is all we can afford for the remapping.
As I said before I think we should avoid PIs as far as possible for the
linking, except maybe for the companion mechanism (where it's really
instructions to the XML processor to handle a set of documents).

>The obvious alternative is simply to have an arcform-like attribute
>for every attribute we want to remap.  Yecch also.  Any other good ideas?

afraid not.
   -- David

David Durand              dgd@cs.bu.edu  \  david@dynamicDiagrams.com
Boston University Computer Science        \  Sr. Analyst
http://www.cs.bu.edu/students/grads/dgd/   \  Dynamic Diagrams
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