SAX/C++ vs. SAX2

uche.ogbuji at uche.ogbuji at
Mon Dec 6 15:19:42 GMT 1999

> | Just a thought: why not take a leaf out of the DOM's book and write
> | the canonical version of the SAX interfaces in a language-neutral
> | format like IDL? 
> This may sound like a good idea, but it has its drawbacks in that one
> is immediately forced into a lowest common denominator design where it
> is impossible to make use of the features that really make each
> language what they are.
> Also, IDL does not have convenient ways of mapping to C++ streams,
> Java InputStream, Python dictionary-like objects and file-like objects
> etc etc  
> Another problem is that exceptions are first-class objects in SAX
> (which is exploited by the Java and Python mappings), but not in IDL.
> Nor are language naming conventions respected. (startElement should
> really be startElement (in Java), start_element (in C++, Python, IDL)
> and start-element (in Common Lisp/Scheme) and there may even be more
> variations.
> As a general reference and statement of intent it might have some
> value, but I really think translation should be done by humans. The
> main advantage feature of IDL, cross-process and cross-language
> interoperability, is not really all that valuable for SAX anyway.

All these problems you bring up are already being addressed by most language 
groups in the process of developing a CORBA binding.  Do you really see such 
evil in the C++, Java and python bindings for native construction from IDL?

I should repeat that not all aspects of CORBA bindings are useful.  For 
instance, the Java binding for actual distributed components requires an ugly 
explosion of packages to cope with CORBA's semantics (largely that language's 
own fault for not supporting multiple implementation sharing).  But I don't 
think these problems plague the simple task of mapping IDL to native 

Uche Ogbuji
FourThought LLC, IT Consultants
uche.ogbuji at	(970)481-0805
Software engineering, project management, Intranets and Extranets

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