DTDs are just for validation (Re: Why Doesn't IE5 use the DTD to Validate?)

Simon St.Laurent simonstl at simonstl.com
Thu Apr 1 15:17:36 BST 1999

At 05:57 AM 4/1/99 -0500, David Megginson wrote:
>I suspect that industry practice will be always to run XML through a
>normaliser before publishing, so that the attribute default values get 
>plugged right into the instance.

I suspect strongly that industry practice for XML will diverge as sharply
as it did for HTML and SGML, leading to lots of 'practices' that render XML
document sets mutually unintelligible to different processors.

Why?  Because too many people have wildly different assumptions about
'industry practice', but as long as they all have assumptions, things get
left out of specs or implemented without concern for the spec.

I'd list some culprits, but it seems too rude.  (Namespaces, validation,
and retrieval of external resources are the main areas for such
entertainment, however.)

Short version: There is no uniform industry practice with regard to XML
processing, and it's not likely that there ever will be.  If it needs to be
hammered down, write it into the spec, ferociously.

Simon St.Laurent
XML: A Primer
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