Streams, protocols, documents and fragments

Mark Birbeck Mark.Birbeck at
Wed Feb 24 22:27:46 GMT 1999

David Megginson wrote:
> Tom Harding writes:
>  > Mark Birbeck wrote:
>  > 
>  > > You know when you've reached the end by the closing tag. That's
>  > > it!
>  > 
>  > There's the pesky issue of the document "epilog" which is Misc
>  > markup that can follow the closing tag.  If the XML Rec were
>  > changed to disallow this then I would be in complete agreement.

But you do know that the *document* has ended. You may receive PIs, but
aren't they directed at applications? If so, then if you are not
expecting any why not ignore them? (And comments.) Then all you need to
wait for is the next '<?xml ... ?>' or <!DOCTYPE or element tag - that
is, the next document.

> More importantly, you don't want to have to parse an entire document
> just to find out where it ends because that forces your system into
> linear processing -- on a busy server, it is absolutely necessary to
> be to isolate the documents/packets quickly and pass them off to
> separate threads (or even separate boxes) for parsing and processing.

You may be able to *parse* parts of the document before the entire
document has completely arrived, but it is surely wrong to *process* the
document because you don't yet know if it's well-formed or valid. Some
of the parsing you did in one process might be invalidated as the result
of another process.



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