Jonathan Robie jwrobie at mindspring.com
Tue Jun 24 20:08:23 BST 1997

At 01:29 PM 6/24/97 -0400, Peter Newcomb wrote:
>> [Jonathan Robie]
>> Hmmm. IDL == Language independent spec of an API....might this be
>> better approached as an XML application? I.e. a DTD for the XML API
>> spec. A doc conforming to that spec.  that can be down-translated to
>> Java, C++, Python and (gasp) IDL!

For the record, I didn't say that. Sean McGrath did, quoting my earlier
message, which went like this:

>Is there really an advantage to defining it in IDL first? The IDL could be
>created after the specification is finished in Java, and the Java-based
>specification is probably easier to create, understand, and test. I *like*
>making things language independent, but at this stage, I'm leery of adding
>complexity that doesn't add any new conceptual power.

So not only am I in agreement with the rest of your message, your message
actually agrees with what I said earlier!

Incidentally, Alex Milowski referred to the "factory design pattern". Using
design patterns as a basis for the design is really helpful, because there
is a book which describes each of these patterns in detail, complete with
diagrams, scenarios, etc. For instance, there are 9 pages on the factory
design pattern that Alex mentioned. This makes it much easier to communicate
about design choices on a high conceptual level. POET's Wildflower API,
which was developed completely independently of Alex's software, also uses a
design patterns approach to parse, manage, and navigate SGML documents in
the document repository. I wonder if some of the rest of us are also design
patterns critters?


Jonathan Robie   jwrobie at mindspring.com  http://www.mindspring.com/~jwrobie
POET Software, 3207 Gibson Road, Durham, N.C., 27703    http://www.poet.com

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