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Re: Near final draft of TAG finding on the Self-Describing Web

From: <noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com>
Date: Thu, 22 Jan 2009 10:17:51 -0500
To: ht@inf.ed.ac.uk (Henry S. Thompson)
Cc: connolly@w3.org, Mark Baker <mark@coactus.com>, Larry Masinter <masinter@adobe.com>, www-tag@w3.org, www-tag-request@w3.org
Message-ID: <OF0E33DE65.16E34A01-ON85257546.0053FBE2-85257546.005408B9@lotus.com>

I'm OK with Henry's proposed change.  So, if you want to make progress 
approving that before I join the call (60 mins in -- if I'm lucky), that's 
fine.  Thank you.


Noah Mendelsohn 
IBM Corporation
One Rogers Street
Cambridge, MA 02142

ht@inf.ed.ac.uk (Henry S. Thompson)
Sent by: www-tag-request@w3.org
01/22/2009 08:52 AM
        To:     noah_mendelsohn@us.ibm.com
        cc:     Mark Baker <mark@coactus.com>, Larry Masinter 
<masinter@adobe.com>, www-tag@w3.org, connolly@w3.org
        Subject:        Re: Near final draft of TAG finding on the 
Self-Describing Web

Hash: SHA1

noah_mendelsohn writes:

> . . .
> To try and resolve this, I've drafted a proposed alternative version
> of section 4.2.3.
> . . .
> The new text is available at [1], with diffs from the previous 
> (problematic) text at [2].  I'd be very grateful for both of your 
> on this.  Does this resolve the concern?  Thank you.
> [1] http://www.w3.org/2001/tag/doc/selfDescribingDocuments-3023.html
> [2] 

I think the minor modification to the first paragraph of 4.2.3 is
helpful and to the point, and allows those who care to see there an
acknowledgement that only full recursive/compositional determination
of the semantics of an XML document guarantees that a deeply nested
element means what its namespace document might suggest it means.

I'm much less happy with the paragraph added at the end of 4.2.3.
I would not expect 3023bis to mandate the interpretation of namespace
qualified names as specified in a namespace document, because to do so
would confuse two distinct things: XML namespaces and XML languages.

I also don't expect 3023bis to address this point in any definitive
way, because to do so would require resolve the complexity the TAG has
already uncovered in attempting to specify a fully-general definition
of the semantics of XML documents (see TAG issue xmlFunctions-34).

I think the finding would be fine without this new paragraph at all,
but if some qualification is necessary, I would suggest something much
simpler, along the following lines:

  Careful readers of RFC 3023, which governs the XML media types, will
  note that it only _allows_ namespace URIs to be interpreted as
  specifying the semantics of qualified names, without _requiring_
  this.  This means that processors that do _not_ behave as the one
  described in the example above are not in violation of the RFC.  But
  processors that _do_ behave in that way are not only allowed by the
  RFC, but support the integration of XML into the self-describing

- -- 
       Henry S. Thompson, School of Informatics, University of Edinburgh
                         Half-time member of W3C Team
      10 Crichton Street, Edinburgh EH8 9AB, SCOTLAND -- (44) 131 650-4440
                Fax: (44) 131 651-1426, e-mail: ht@inf.ed.ac.uk
                       URL: http://www.ltg.ed.ac.uk/~ht/
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Received on Thursday, 22 January 2009 15:18:51 UTC

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