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Michael Alaly alaly at
Wed May 13 14:27:42 BST 1998

I am new to the list, but I have followed the short tag discussion for about a week now. I am in agreement with those who believe it is not necessary. To respond to Paul's argument about 'optional' XML standards, I will quote the W3C's XML recommendation (uh oh!) 

"4. It shall be easy to write programs which process XML documents.
 5. The number of optional features in XML is to be kept to the absolute minimum, ideally zero."

Page 4.

I believe that human readability and ease of use is more important than saving the few K that short tags could offer (in some cases more). XML should be as standardized as possible and as readable as possible. Optional short tags would undermine both of those characteristics which make XML the future.

My two cents,

Michael Alaly
alaly at

Paul Prescod  

I think that even more important than this argument is that nobody is
proposing mandatory short end tags. XML with optional short end tags
offers the advantages of languages with uniform, short end markers but
also allows you to "be redundant" where that will help. I've proposed in
the past that full SGML should take optional redundancy farther to allow
something like this:

   </DIV ID=WHY>


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