saving bandwitdh?

Kay Michael Michael.Kay at
Wed Jun 23 16:25:06 BST 1999

> What if we did not use the end-tag  </tag> and just used </> 
> to end our tags would it not be a nice saving of bandwitdh? 

Much discussed in the past, thought unfortunately the search engine for the
list archive doesn't seem to be working at the moment.

The usual answer is that the error checking (and diagnostics) you get from a
redundant tag is of more value than the bandwidth saving you get by omitting
it. If you want to save bandwidth, use compression.

(Having said that, I have just found myself designing an XML document with
one-character tags for download to the browser, and it does make a
difference. So I have some sympathy with the argument. But standards are
standards, and by definition they can't suit everybody).

Some of the argument against abbreviated end tags is psychological: SGML
allowed too many such options, and it caused parsers to become bloated and
incompatible. So the SGML oldies have an inbuilt distaste for them.

Mike Kay

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