Why XML data typing is hard

david at megginson.com david at megginson.com
Mon Nov 30 18:28:02 GMT 1998

Henry S. Thompson writes:

 > if we add sensitivity to language to our lexical typing, I might write
 > <balance xml:lang='fr'>4,50</balance>
 > OR
 > <balance xml:lang='ar'>&#x0664;&#x066B;&#x0665;&#0660;</balance>
 > Is the latter an indication of a plausable way forward, i.e. lexical
 > types which are parameterised by (natural) language?

It sounds quite plausible: it still places a burden of locale handling
on the processor or the application, but that's inevitable when we're
dealing with lexical constraints.  At least with this approach the
application will be able to fail gracefully:

  Warning: sample.xml line 18 column 12: Cannot validate constraint
           "float" for unsupported language "ar" (trying default
           locale en-CA).

(That's not "Californian English", by the way.)

All the best,


David Megginson                 david at megginson.com

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