What Clean Specs Achieve

Mark Birbeck Mark.Birbeck at iedigital.net
Sat Feb 6 20:08:37 GMT 1999

Tyler Baker wrote:
> I guess this goes right down to the heart of the question of 
> XML's intended audience.  My
> impression was that XML was intended primarily as a simple 
> markup language for the web.  If
> XML is just a hyped up subset of SGML, then what good does it 
> buy me or the majority of the
> web as a tool for the general user-audience.

It buys you loads. Imagine you want to write a tool to do presentations.
Imagine you want it viewed by lots of people all over the world. If you
use a Shockwave DTD for your file format then it will be. Imagine you
want to embed some data into your reports that can be used by a Excel  -
graphed, pivoted, sorted, etc. - you could put that section of the data
into Office 200 format. Imagine you want to spell check all your
invoices. You could pass your data to a general purpose spell checker
that doesn't just understand Word, or understand OLE documents, but
understands ANY document in the entire world! The productivity increases
are just too big too take in.

Hyped up?

>  After all HTML 
> is crap, but tons and tons of
> people with absolutely no programming experience can pick it 
> up rather fast.

Or slow if they go and read the HTML 4.0 spec. Most intelligent people
would start with 'HTML in a day'. Many on this list patronisingly think
that the average user is stupid enough to want to waste their time
taking the long way round. They've got better things to do!

Mark Birbeck
Managing Director
Intra Extra Digital Ltd.
39 Whitfield Street
w: http://www.iedigital.net/
t: 0171 681 4135
e: Mark.Birbeck at iedigital.net

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