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Re: Media types

From: Norman Walsh <Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM>
Date: Mon, 14 Jan 2002 09:38:26 -0500
To: www-tag@w3.org
Cc: xml-dist-app@w3.org
Message-ID: <87r8otatgd.fsf@nwalsh.com>
I'm not sure I fully grok all of the issues surrounding media types
and their interactions with XML vocabularies, so the following
question probably stems from naivete as much as anything else.

In general, is there really any value in declaring specific media
types for XML vocabularies?

Imagine that I've got text/foo+xml and text/bar+xml. If I send a
document that's just 'foo' or just 'bar', those may have value. But as
soon as I start mixing foo and bar together, I don't see that there's
any right answer as to what media type I should use.

It seems to me that I might as well say text/xml and let the receiver
figure it out from the namespace URIs (XML is self-describing for just
this reason, no?). About the only useful distinction I can see is a
flag to indicate that the document only uses a single namespace (so
that I know from the root element what namespace its in).

Clearly there are problems with this approach, but I'm not sure that
having specific MIME types really solves any of them in the general
case of mixed namespace documents.

                                        Be seeing you,

Norman.Walsh@Sun.COM   | 'I have done that,' says my memory. 'I cannot
XML Standards Engineer | have done that'--says my pride, and remains
XML Technology Center  | adamant. At last--memory yields.--Nietzsche
Sun Microsystems, Inc. | 
Received on Monday, 14 January 2002 09:38:50 UTC

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