Confused about & in entity literal

Richard Tobin richard at
Tue May 11 00:52:39 BST 1999

> Yes I know that the ampersands should have been escaped technically,

Why "technically"?  If it wasn't meant to be an entity reference, the
document is just plain wrong.  If it *is* meant to be an entity reference,
why is it any stranger than, say,

 <[128K of name characters]/>

or any of the other places where a name occurs?

> but how many parsers would blow up in this situation trying to
> buffer up that much text?

It's tempting to use fixed-size buffers for such things, but when I've
done that in the past it's usually turned out to be a mistake.

Have you found parsers that "blow up" in this case?

Of course, an implementation is perfectly free to warn about absurdly
long names.

-- Richard

xml-dev: A list for W3C XML Developers. To post, mailto:xml-dev at
Archived as: and on CD-ROM/ISBN 981-02-3594-1
To (un)subscribe, mailto:majordomo at the following message;
(un)subscribe xml-dev
To subscribe to the digests, mailto:majordomo at the following message;
subscribe xml-dev-digest
List coordinator, Henry Rzepa (mailto:rzepa at

More information about the Xml-dev mailing list