direct/indirect/parallel structure modeling [RE: Douglas Hofstadter's 3-level message model]

Peter Murray-Rust peter at
Thu Jun 25 06:21:35 BST 1998

At 00:08 24/06/98 +1000, Rick Jelliffe wrote:
>One of the most useful "outer layer" messages that XML-DEV could push for
>W3C recognition of (i.e. in the future developments of XML-Data or
>RDF-schema or XSchema or whatever emerges) is a standard attribute to allow
>you to say

As I have been writing the last set of messages [and I'm doing so in the
early hours because I can't sleep], it seems clear that there is a
potentially clear and useful divide between XML and XML-DEV. In places XML
- deliberately - says "it's up to you how to implement this - XML doesn't
care". PIs is an obvious example - XML doesn't even say what the syntax of
PIs is, apart from a target and the rest.

The problem is that if the XML *community* (rather than the spec
developers) thinks this solves the problem, they're wrong. Because it
simple leaves it for another section to manage. If that is being tackled by
the W3C, fine. At least so long as the timescale is acceptable to those who
want to use XML. If it isn't being tackled, then we shall have
implementation-soup. And the avoidance of soup was really the fundamental
reason we set up XML-DEV.

So - if we can agree that there are soup regions that (a) need sorting (b)
our contribution could be helpful - that's what we are here for.


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

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