Inheritance/defaulting of attributes

Paul Prescod papresco at
Wed Oct 8 05:57:14 BST 1997

Tim Bray wrote:
> Documents are different.  To start with, it's far from clear to me
> that the term "inheritance," standing by itself, has a useful
> semantic in the context of documents.

I agree. Inheritance in OOP only had meaning after it was defined.
Still, if we are talking about "element type inheritance" I think the
obvious meaning would be that element sub-types would "inherit"
"properties" (attributes and content model) from super-types.
> This has a practical consequence.  We should, in future, struggle
> for greater precision; for example, however it is clear that
> however LOCATOR attributes depend on those in the parent EXTENDED
> linking element, it ain't inheritance in the O-O style. -Tim

Actually, in OOP that is called "acquisition". It is evolving a language
and understanding of its own. See:

Environmental Acquisition - A New Inheritance Mechanism

So we are not in completely uncharted waters although there will
certainly be some differences.

 Paul Prescod

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