SAX2 Queries (was Re: Announcement: SAX2 1999-06-01 alpha release for Java)

David Megginson david at
Wed Jun 2 16:19:17 BST 1999

Lars Marius Garshol writes:

 >   - Should we have a CompleteHandlerBase in helpers which combines
 >     HandlerBase, DeclHandler, LexicalHandler and NamespaceHandler?

I'm reluctant, because I don't want to hard-code the optional handlers 
into the interface any more than I have to.  Right now, the separate
handler classes are present, but they are nowhere referred to.  In the 
future, we may need to add new handler types (SchemaHandler?), and I
don't want to have to change existing classes when we do so.

 >   - If one of the misc handlers are supported, must all the methods in
 >     it be supported? (For example, xmlproc currently won't support the
 >     CDATA callbacks in LexicalHandler.)

Opinions, anyone?  Clearly, matching start/end events have to be both
implemented or both skipped, but otherwise, what are people's

 >   - Should the *NamespaceDeclScope methods be called *NamespaceScope
 >     instead? It's a little less of a mouthful, at least.

I thought about it, but the problem is that it's not the scope for the 
namespace, only for the declaration; the same namespace might be
mentioned in several nested declarations.

 >   - Do we need to mandate a default value for namespace separator?
 >     Should it be space ( )?

Yes, we do need a default.  The DOM WG is struggling with this as
well, and we might be able to piggy-back.

Personally, I like  , but I recall that John Cowan is partial to
^ (caret).

 >   - Can namespace properties be tuned when namespace processing is off?

No -- we need to make that clear

 >   - Should we add a DTDParser interface? In some cases one will only
 >     want to parse the DTD and since we have DeclHandler and DTDHandler
 >     it makes sense to me to add an interface to a DTD parser. Maybe
 >     like so:

I don't think that we need a separate interface.  After all, you could 
create SAX parsers for RTF, HTML, LaTeX, or just about anything --
there's no reason that someone couldn't create a SAXDTDParser class
implementing Parser and Configurable, where the class tried to parse a 
DTD rather than a complete document.

 >   - Where did AttributeList2 go?

I was wondering if anyone would notice.  I'm still not sure how to
handle that -- should there be a feature that you can use to check
whether the parser can deliver an extended attribute list?

All the best,


David Megginson                 david at

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