Do I need to use a validating parser?
tbray at textuality.com
Tue May 4 18:27:59 BST 1999
At 10:54 AM 5/4/99 -0400, Joshua E. Smith wrote:
>First, an easy one: If a language is defined in XML, you would say that
>language is XML-______. Compliant? Derived? ish? ey? Compatible?
>I'm trying to choose a parser to use in my plugin. I see a choice between
>expat, which is non-validating, and will increase my download size by
><100K, and SP which is validating, and will increase my download size by
>about 1MB. Gak.
James is working on a version of expat which compiles to substantially less,
at the cost of some performance (i.e. it'll still be faster than
anything else, I bet). I don't think SP is appropriate in the general
case for XML apps.
>I suppose that the validation should really be done a priori by the content
>developer using a validating editor, so doing validation in my plugin is
>really unnecessary. Is that true?
Depends whether you trust the source. If you're writing both ends, you're
probably OK (once you've got the system debugged).
>Do commercial validating XML editors exist yet?
Yes. From Arbortext (Adept) and (shipping any day now) SoftQuad
(XMetaL). Frame+SGML is, as the name suggests, SGML not XML, but it'll
work OK with XML.
>I also suppose that my DTD is going to be pretty big by the time it's done,
>and downloading it every time someone wants to use my plugin is kind of
>stupid. Right? So that's another reason NOT to use a validating parser.
Maybe the best reason.
>But in my reading [XML Specification Guide: Graham, Quin, 1999], it
>appears that non-validating parsers are allowed to ignore tons of stuff.
>Is there ANY documentation of what expat actually *does*? (For that
>matter, is there any documentation at all?)
.h files :)
>I assume it ignores external
Wrong. Mind you, you have to do some extra work to deal with them.
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