DTD invented by Microsoft?!

W. Eliot Kimber eliot at isogen.com
Tue Jun 24 17:05:42 BST 1997

At 02:06 PM 6/24/97 +0000, akirkpatrick at ims-global.com wrote:
>> Microsoft has proposed a "Document Type Definition" (DTD) syntax for   
>expressing the schema for an > XML document directly within XML itself,   
>allowing XML data to describe its own structure. 

In Microsoft's defense, they have correctly used the term "document type
definition", which is what the acronym "DTD" expands to, to mean the
overall definition of a document type.  As SGML only defines part of the
total mechanism one needs to define a document type (the declarations
allowed within a DOCTYPE declarations, what we are now calling "DTD
declarations"), you are free to define additional formalisms for defining
schemas however you want.

Many people have defined "DTDs for DTDs" (including myself)--the only thing
you can't do is claim to be *replacing* the declarations defined by 8879.
Of course, since XML (and the WebSGML TC) allow the DOCTYPE declaration (or
its contained declarations) to be omitted, there's nothing preventing the
use of some alternate syntax for schema representation as an *application

The XML ERB is on record as stating that while it might be useful to have a
"better" syntax for DTD declarations, the definition of such is out of
scope for XML, and in any case is a tar pit second only to name spaces (and
thus best left to the SGML revision).



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