Comments on Section 2.6 of XML-Namespaces

james anderson James.Anderson at
Wed Apr 1 15:54:57 BST 1998

hello again;

Rick Jelliffe wrote:

> > However, as soon as you allow elements to be broken up into their
> > individual attributes, this gaurantee goes away.  Attribute "hijacking"
> > makes it impossible to maintain the relationship between attributes of a
> > single element, and impossible to maintain the relationship between the
> > attributes and the child elements/content.
> I dont think I agree with your ideas of "hijacking". An attribute is
> whatever
> the designer has said it is, for better or worse. E.g., if a document type
> designer says that all elements types will have an attribute which gives
> the line number of the element type declaration in the original document,
> then that attribute has nothing to do with the element type itself, and

did you mean "element type name" here? if not, what is the "type" other than an
artifact of the declaration ?

> everything to do with the artifacts of the declaration of that type. Such
> an attribute has its meaning without any reference to any particular
> element type being defined. So some attributes are highly coupled to

practically speaking, an attlist without a matching element declaration
constitutes an implicit definition as soon as it permits an element instance to
behave as if the attribute can be bound to it.

> their type, some are highly uncoupled.

although  a form like
'<!ATTLIST' S 'ANY' AttDef* S? '>'
is not precluded, i doubt if the effect is well defined... and
'<!ATTLIST' S '(' Names ')' AttDef* S? '>'
was excluded. in which case the degree coupling between attribute and element,
though it may be multiplied by additional attlist declaration, remains unchanged
in the individual instance.

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