saving bandwitdh?

Rick Jelliffe ricko at
Thu Jun 24 04:54:11 BST 1999

From: Marcus Carr <mrc at>
 >Kay Michael wrote:
>> Some of the argument against abbreviated end tags is psychological:
>> allowed too many such options, and it caused parsers to become
bloated and
>> incompatible. So the SGML oldies have an inbuilt distaste for them.
>Not this one - I still use SGML parsers specifically because they do
make it easier to mark up
>data by inserting the minimum number of tags.

I think there are two aspects:

    1) SGML is at heart a compiler compiler; to complain that it
variant syntaxes is like complaining that lex allows different delimiter
that is the point of it.

    2) SGML'86 allows different implementation to implement only parts
of the optional feature set, but did not provide a way to name or manage
these (i.e., invoking the SGML declaration using a formal public
This in turn made it too difficult to create any brand identity: the
could not self-describe its brand of syntax.   XML is largely a specific
Web-SGML declaration with a good brand-identity mechanism.

Rick Jelliffe

(N.b. despite the  Allette email address, I don't work there. I just
keeping an
email account there.)

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