HERE's why the world needs a simpler XML! [was Re: The XML decl is not a PI (especially in SAX)]

Michael Champion Mike.Champion at
Sun Nov 14 18:46:35 GMT 1999

----- Original Message -----
From: David Megginson <david at>
To: <xml-dev at>
Sent: Sunday, November 14, 1999 7:28 AM
Subject: The XML decl is not a PI (especially in SAX)

> Here are the productions for a processing instruction in XML 1.0:
> [16] PI ::= '<?' PITarget (S (Char* - (Char* '?>' Char*)))? '?>'
> [17] PITarget ::= Name - (('X' | 'x') ('M' | 'm') ('L' | 'l'))
> The XML and text declarations cannot match this production -- the only
> reason that the syntax is similar is so that XML could work with
> legacy SGML tools.


> That book is also wrong -- please inform the author.

Sigh.  I'm sure David Megginson is right ... but doesn't this illustrate a
big point that Don Park has been making?  We've got this thing that looks
like a PI to the casual observer, and even people who've looked at the
subject deeply enough to write a book about XML have gotten confused!

I suspect that either the "XML community" will work together on a
simplification of XML that makes it more accessible to the kinds of people
who've been writing HTML in Notepad for the last few years ... or somebody
else will ... or worse yet, a kindof "de facto lowest common denominator"
flavor of XML will get loosely defined by various vendors who don't want to
impose this kind of stuff on their customers.

[duck  ;~)  ]

Mike Champion

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