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RE: Comments on DOM2 CR

From: <keshlam@us.ibm.com>
Date: Mon, 6 Mar 2000 08:47:08 -0500
To: jvogel@ebt.com
cc: kboone@ebt.com, www-dom@w3.org
Message-ID: <8525689A.004BBA90.00@D51MTA03.pok.ibm.com>
>You might want to re-think this.  AT present, both Document
>and DOMImplementation serve as factories for various things.
>You are saying that you would use Document to
>create TreeWalkers and NodeIterators, but as currently specified you use
>DOMImplementation to create DocumentType and Document objects,
>a bit inconsistent.

No, that's actually pretty consistant.

Most of the DOM's objects are required to be aware of which Document they
belong to. As a result, they would need to be either created by the
Document, or the Document would have to be passed into their factory. We
chose the former, which I think is a better idiom.

But that isn't true of Document itself -- a Document has its own context,
and we didn't want to require that you have a Document before you could
create a Document. Since a Document's context is mostly defined by the
DOMImplementation, we put the factory there. We could have put it on
DocumentType, but DocumentType is optional.

Our current design assumes that the DocumentType may help direct the
instantiation of the Document; therefore we have to be able to create it
before the Document is created, and we put the factory on
DOMImplementation. However, DocumentType does get bound to a specific
Document when the Document's factory is called, and some have said they
want to be able to instantiate and bind the DocumentType after the
Document; we'll look at this in more detail in Level 3.

I'm not sure if traversal should be an exception or not. As noted above, we
were guessing that DOMs might want to use their DocumentType to direct
subclassing of the document tree, in order to add behaviors specific to
that kind of document. In Theory, that might also want to affect which
implementation of the traversal engines you use -- a TreeWalker or
NodeIterator which is aware of the structure of a valid document may be
able to optimize some kinds of navigation. ("This portion of the grammar
will never contain a Text node, so don't bother looking for one", or "This
kind of document uses a different back-end storage model, which has helper
functions for the next-matching-node lookup"). If we move the factory up to
DOMImplementation, it's a bit harder to take advantage of those
opportunities -- I suspect that you'd wind up having to pass the Document
or DocumentType into the factory as a parameter, which is roughly
equivalent to moving the factory back down to those objects.

>The other issue is that because Node.getOwnerDocument() is specified
>to return null, not "this", in the case of a DOCUMENT_NODE, you cannot
>use the following code:
>   node.getOwnerDocument().createTreeWalker(),

DOM Level 1 behavior, debated at that time. Given that there may be
existing code which depends on it, I think it's a bit late for a change. A
simple conditional will handle this case, but I agree it isn't pretty.

Joe Kesselman  / IBM Research
Received on Monday, 6 March 2000 08:47:59 UTC

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