SAX: Error Reporting (question 4 of 10)

David Megginson ak117 at
Sun Jan 4 18:37:07 GMT 1998

Tim Bray writes:

 > On this one, I agree with David and disagree with James.  I don't
 > see the advantages to using an exception.  I think that a SAX processor
 > should use fatal() (why the longer fatalError()?) - this has the
 > advantage that you can, after the first message, go on looking for
 > more fatal errors.  Of course, a SAX processor must not, after the first 
 > fatal() callback, emit any more element() or charData() callbacks.

The only problem here is that the element context could be useful for
error reporting (i.e. "Error in <name> in <address> in
<frontmatter>").  When XML documents are machine generated, this type
of an error message might be more useful than a line number.

Thanks, and all the best,


David Megginson                 ak117 at
Microstar Software Ltd.         dmeggins at

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