What is a namespace ... really?

Roger L. Costello costello at mail11.mitre.org
Fri Jan 15 14:03:11 GMT 1999

I thought I knew what a namespace was ... but now I think perhaps I don't. 

Suppose that I create a DTD (BookCatalogue.dtd).  In this DTD I define some
elements, attributes, entities, etc.  I define the relationships between
the elements, attributes, etc.  I place BookCatalogue.dtd in a directory:


Is this a namespace?  That is, is the file itself (BookCatalogue.dtd) a

In all the examples that I see in the namespace spec they don't refer to a
specific file.  Instead, they refer to "some place", such as:


So, perhaps the "directory" that BookCatalogue.dtd resides in is the
namespace? i.e.,


I thought I knew the way, now I don't.  Help me find my way again.  /Roger

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