XSL Debate, Leventhal responds to Stephen Deach

Rick Jelliffe ricko at allette.com.au
Tue Jun 22 18:46:58 BST 1999

 From: Simon St.Laurent <simonstl at simonstl.com>

 >In the larger case, however, I think this argument obscures the
>Semantics have been removed
>            and
>Semantics we can't understand

But removing a label does not remove semantics unless that label has
semantics (available through markup or hardcoded into the application.)
There is nothing more semantic about <name> than <font>.

(In old SGML terms, <font> is *more* semantic than <name>. )
XML is designed for resolved use; SGML was designed for the world
where a human gets a document and tries to figure out a tricky way
to use it. XML shouldn't go back into that SGML minefield: it is to
difficult to resolve against the Web paradigm.

In XSL you can generate linking attributes which point to a controlled
vocabulary or which which point to the original document anyway.
So your argument here is not about XSL at all, but about one particular
use of XSL.

>Yes, we need controlled vocabularies.  Their absence, however, does not
>suggest that we need to rush our data to a controlled vocabulary that
>describes formatting.

But XSL has a transformation language, so presumably it is transforming
from a more abstract kind of markup.  Are you saying that is it always
to make data available in formatting markup? That would be a strange
thing for the developer of FOP.

Rick Jelliffe

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