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RE: Proposed restatement of syntax-based interoperability principle ( was RE: Action item on syntax-based interoperability)

From: David Orchard <dorchard@bea.com>
Date: Sat, 25 Oct 2003 11:55:16 -0700
To: "'Tim Bray'" <tbray@textuality.com>, <noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com>
Cc: "'Champion, Mike'" <Mike.Champion@SoftwareAG-USA.com>, <www-tag@w3.org>
Message-ID: <01d401c39b29$888ad470$fe2b000a@beasys.com>


While it is true that interoperability is only really achieved by the
fruitful union of syntax, APIs, data models, and semantics (heck add in test
suites...), syntax is the foundational piece.  Removing syntax leaves much
less chance of interop.  Granted, cases exist where interop has been
achieved without it, but there are far fewer of those.  In fact, a number of
security folks over wss land have been arguing that without syntax, there is
zero interop because security can only be applied on syntax.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: www-tag-request@w3.org
> [mailto:www-tag-request@w3.org]On Behalf Of
> Tim Bray
> Sent: Saturday, October 25, 2003 9:25 AM
> To: noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com
> Cc: Champion, Mike; www-tag@w3.org
> Subject: Re: Proposed restatement of syntax-based interoperability
> principle ( was RE: Action item on syntax-based interoperability)
> On Friday, October 24, 2003, at 01:32  PM, noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com
> wrote:
> > So, I think that some form of explicit model is important, indeed
> > necessary.  We must then avoid the temptation to use the
> existence of a
> > data model as an excuse for a proliferation of non-standard or even
> > standardized serial syntaxes.  I think we can avoid those
> temptations
> > while still benefiting from clear documentation of the models that I
> > believe have been implicit in XML from day 1 anyway.
> I tend to agree that the infoset represents valuable work,
> but I don't
> think that's on the grounds of data modeling.  Let me argue
> by example.
>   The RSS community has this deplorable desire to ship
> "escaped markup"
> around.  One faction was arguing that this should be done with CDATA
> rather than per-char &-escaping, and then it wouldn't be so
> bothersome.
>   The infoset was quite useful in shouting these people down.  But
> nobody in the RSS world has ever argued that RSS needs to define a
> "data model" to get its job done.  So to use your terms, the real
> function here is in establishing equivalence classes among
> instances of
> XML syntax.
> I'm certainly not arguing that APIs and data models aren't useful and
> necessary citizens of the software universe.  I'm just saying
> that they
> do not provide a basis for interoperability in networked information
> systems.  And the evidence is on my side. -Tim
Received on Saturday, 25 October 2003 14:56:05 UTC

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