Re: Significant W3C Confusion over Namespace Meaning and Policy

On Feb 9, 2005, at 16:34, John Boyer wrote:

> Dear TAG,
> Some of you may be aware that an issue with the
> xml:id specification began erupting the day
> before it became a CR.
> The issue has flowered nicely into a more general
> discussion of what namespaces mean and what is
> the W3C policy regarding their assignment in
> recommendation track documents.
> I've been asked to provide this information to you,
> and as PureEdge AC rep I'd like to please request that
> the TAG make a formal statement to all working groups
> regarding these issues as soon as possible.
> The kernel of the issue is my interpretation of
> the definition of namespace as it appears in the
> Namespaces recommendation.  The definition is that
> a namespace is a collection of names *identified*
> by a URI. So, for example, the namespace
> ({lang, space},
> is not equal to
> ({lang, space, base, id},
> The W3C director directed the W3C to this interpretation in
>, which states that a recommendation
> cannot add more than clarifications and bug fixes without changing
> the namespace URI.

Good point.
Well,it says that changes should not be done which break existing
data or code which reads it.

Yes, the addition of xml:id tag changes XML ins such a way that
new documents with xml:id attributes are not XML 1.0 documents,
if you interpret the XML1.0 spec to rule out the use of attributes
in the XML namespace.

I think the argument here is that actual implementations
(except canon'n) all treat xml:id as a normal attribute,
and so they don't break.  But of course it is more complicated than 

In general, the emphasis up to CR is on the WG simply
setting accurate expectations for the sorts of changes to be made.
Maybe that should be continued through to Rec.

It sound as though the TAG should consider this.

Tim BL

> Thanks,
> John Boyer, Ph.D.
> Senior Product Architect and Research Scientist
> PureEdge Solutions Inc.

Received on Saturday, 12 February 2005 15:52:27 UTC