SAX: How many interfaces?

Peter Murray-Rust peter at
Tue Jan 6 21:02:07 GMT 1998

At 09:43 06/01/98 -0500, David Megginson wrote:
>For SAX, how much does the number of interfaces and classes matter?
>My original plan was to have something like this in the *.sax package
>(I'm still experimenting with different names):
[... suggested interfaces snipped...]

I can't comment usefully on this.
>As a professional SGML/XML implementor and system architect, I am very
>comfortable with this sort of approach, but I don't know how it will
>play with typical Java hackers:
>- Will this arrangement be too hard to understand?

Taking me as test-bed, 'no', IFF good, running examples are provided. If
only the interface is provided I suspect 'yes'.  I have managed with Lark,
AElfred and NXP *because* they provided a,, etc.
which minimally and precisely exercised all their interfaces. I then
convert my application gently by tweaking each one in turn to see whether
it works for me (answer="yes"). 
>- Will it look like we're being XML purists and splitting too many
>  theoretical hairs, for something that should be dead simple (what
>  they consider to be just a single data format)?

Possibly. But they also come across some abstraction in java.awt - e.g. you
can't use Graphics.drawImage() without an ImageObserver argument. I've not
had the time to understand this yet, but it I set it to null, nothing awful
happens. Similarly the SwingSet is at least as complex as SAX will be.

>- Will applet writers be willing to include this many extra *.class
>  files just for XML support?

What's the issue here? The *total bytecount* of the *.class, or the number
of *.class files or the number of import statements?  None of these would
bother me. But I haven't considered performance issues (my own are far
worse :-)

>There remain strong pragmatic arguments for the
>everything-in-a-single-interface approach.

I'll leave this to you - but I wouldn't dissent from simplicity

Peter Murray-Rust, Director Virtual School of Molecular Sciences, domestic
net connection
VSMS, Virtual Hyperglossary

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