Compound Documents - necessary for success?

Avneet Sawhney sawhneya at
Thu Jan 28 16:01:05 GMT 1999


There are some interesting thoughts here, and I think your assertions are based
on the common belief which says "use composition when you can, use inheritance
when you have to".

While I have no dispute with this, I'm wondering if you are saying that you only
need one and not the other.  Specifically, I do not think that only using
compound documents can solve issues of customization which have been previously

My concern is, given an industry standard schema, how do I use this internally
when I know I will have to augment the standard schema with information specific
to my company, dept., and application. Certainly, not all players will be using
the standard schema as is. Some customization will be necessary.

I am not talking about fragments here either, so perhaps we have different issues
if your focus on composition is based on the use of  fragments.



Roger L. Costello wrote:

> I would like to make two assertions:
> (1) Compound documents are necessary for the success of XML.
> (2) Focusing on inheritance is of lesser importance than focusing on
> composition.
> Also the object community has come to the consensus that composition (black
> box reuse) enables more robust development than does inheritance (white box
> reuse).  Analogously, I would assert that the focus in XML should be on
> enabling compound documents rather than on enabling inheritance.

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