A Plea for Schemas

Tim Bray tbray at textuality.com
Mon Nov 1 22:55:56 GMT 1999

Useful discussion, hope lots of people are reading it.  

"Let a hundred flowers bloom" OK, but let a bunch of different schema
*languages* co-exist?  Aargh, this sounds like it makes life more difficult
than need be.

I share the doubt that a grand unified schema repository will be tractable
to build & maintain.  I also am enthusiasm-challenged because in my (lengthy)
experience with XML and its ancestors, I have only ever seen machine-readable
schemas put to use in one application: namely the use of DTDs in 
hand-authoring XML documents.  Clearly the addition of datatypes and so on
should enable all sorts of other goodies but we are all placing bets on
an as-yet-unrealized future.  So some degree of skepticism is in order.

Note "machine-readable" in the sentence above.  At this point in history,
it's the human-readable part of schemas that seem to me to have the
biggest payoffs, because that's what the programmers read before they
write the code that actually does something useful. -Tim

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