XML Schema and international Booleans

Reynolds, Gregg greynolds at datalogics.com
Fri Nov 12 15:24:04 GMT 1999

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Rick Jelliffe [mailto:ricko at allette.com.au]
> Sent: Friday, November 12, 1999 12:32 AM
>  > ISO creates international standards and im pretty sure that
> {true,false} is not
> > internationally accepted. Using zero (0) and one (1) is 
> certainly more
> neutral and
> > logical.
> No, because 0 and 1 do not carry implications of true or false to many
> people.  And 0 and 1 are Western symbols, so they are only 
> slightly more
> "international" than "true" and "false". Also, don't forget that O is
> used for "approve" and X is used for "disapprove" in some 
> countries, so
> some people may expect 0 to mean "true".

I may be mistaken about this, but I'm pretty sure that Boolean logic has
nothing to do with truth and falsity.  It just needs two distinguishable
values.  If we wanted to be really up-to-the-minute, we could follow the
usage of logicians and use U+22A4 (DOWN TACK) and U+22A5 (DOWN TACK) as the
canonical values (notice I didn't say "as 'true' and 'false'); but we would
be entirely justified in choosing "foo" and "bar".  Whether the booleans are
used to denote truth-values depends on the application, which should be able
to express t/f in any language.

I'm only half-joking about DOWN/UP TACK; DOWN TACK looks like a capital 'T',
UP TACK looks like it's opposite, so the mapping the true/false is
straightforward, but not part of the semantics of the symbols.  Also about
as language-neutral as it gets.  So define schema semantics in terms of
down/up tack, and define a few standard lexical mappings (e.g. to 'true' and
'false') that all implementations are required to understand.

My two cents before I head back to the fox hole.


P.S.  I just love the phrase "international boolean".  We certainly don't
need no stinkin' national booleans.  Although I understand the municipal
booleans aren't bad in some places. ;)

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