Status of SML?

Rick Jelliffe ricko at
Thu Dec 16 06:16:03 GMT 1999

 From: Lisa Rein <lisarein at> 

>please tell me this is just a cruel, cruel little prank james...
>let us go on with our overburdeoned, attribute-laden lives.....:-|

But some of the SMLies want more attributes not less: i.e., "YML"!

YML is interesting: if attributes v. elements can be justified because
they both are used differently in many programs (i.e., pull v. push),
why not have a syntax that allows heirarchical attributes: the API 
provides these-new attributes in a tree and elements in a stream: 
a self-pruning tree.  (Of course, the trouble with this idea is that
prunability is more a processing issue rather than a data issues.
And it could be done in XML by adding an attribute to elements
or element type declarations, such as   yml:prunable="yes".)
(there is no need for a PI, since it follows element boundaries).

XML.COM asked me to write an article on SML: it is now up in
the  current issue

I hope it is more conciliatory. During the XML development,
many people who were antagonistic to SGML got a grudging
respect for it, and many SGML people who doubted toy languages
would work shifted their positions too. I expect the same thing
can happen with SML: it may go in an unexpected direction.  

Rick Jelliffe

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