Internal subset equivalent in new schema proposals?

Borden, Jonathan jborden at
Fri Nov 27 14:42:51 GMT 1998

As far as I can tell, the only documents I know of which is truly organized
for human communication have MIME types of "text/plain". Even this makes the
basic assumption that a computer or terminal is available to display the
bits as ASCII text. In general, digital documents *all* require some
transformation in order to interface to the human either via its optical
input, the retina, audio input, the cochlea or tactile input. Hence we might
argue that "image/jpeg" and "audio/wave" (or whatever a sound clip is!) are
equally organized for human communication. PDF is no better than HTML or
SMIL or whatever other type of XML or SGML document type in being organized
for human communication as all require transformation for screen display
(which is the human communication interface). Certainly the average human
cannot read a raw HTML document nor can they read a raw PDF document.

Under the SGML/XML definition, everything is either a document or part of a
document so it is just a matter of opinion as to whether XML is 'optimized'
for 'documents' or 'data'. To me, XML itself is optimized for neither/both,
rather certain applications/DTD's/transforms are optimized for one or the

Jonathan Borden
JABR Technology Corp.

>Michael Kay wrote:
> A document is information organised for human communication; data is
> information organised for machine processing. XML can do both, but I stick
> with my original claim that it is optimised for the former.

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