namespaces for name attribute values?

Eric Hellman eric at
Fri Sep 18 23:57:59 BST 1998

Here's the problem:

We're designing an XML DTD. We want the documents to be valid. We would
like to provide for Dublin Core Metadata.

One way to do this is:
<DC xmlns="DC=">
   <DC:Creator>Eric Hellman</DC:Creator>

This declares the nomenclature of "Creator" in an unambiguous way. (xmlns
could be declared as a default in the DTD) The problem, is that we have no
control over Dublin Core. Dublin Core will get extensions, and we'd rather
not revise our dtd every time Dublin Core changed.

The second way to do this is the HTML way:

<meta name="DC.creator" content="Eric Hellman">

This encapsulates the Dublin core element set from our DTD, but the
nomenclature declaration is absent.

Could a "namespace" declaration be added to an element to declare the
nomenclature for attribute values?:
<meta name="DC:Creator" content="Eric Hellman"

Would this new meaning for a namespace declaration be useful?

Eric Hellman
Openly Informatics, Inc.           Tools for 21st Century Scholarly Publishing

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