[SML] Whether to support Attribute or not?

Paul Tchistopolskii paul at qub.com
Sun Nov 28 06:15:21 GMT 1999

> >
> > Because avoiding the difference between attributes and elements
> > simplifyes the addressing and *every* realted API ( Xpath, Xslt, DOM,
> > XQL e t.c. )  a *lot*  + it  avoids 'multiple levels of encoding' problems
> e t.c.
> >
> That seems like the best reason to remove attributes from "SML" to me too.

> A couple of potential downsides ...
> If SML parsers don't recognize attributes, then we can't have an SML-ized
> XHTML.  Does anyone care?  How about WML?  I for one would care if WML was
> incompatible with SML ...

We have a huge 'legacy' problem with attributes. I suggest to solve the 
legacy problems in the way they are solved in general. 

SML <-> XML-format-with-attributes converter, or especial layer e t.c, 
but *not*  the changes to SML layer.

> How about XSLT?  It would be nice if stylesheets to turn SML into something
> displayable were themselves parseable as SML.  I'm pretty sure that you
> couldn't write a useful XSLT stylesheet without using attributes ....


S-XSLT should be written anyway. XT will hardly fit into 
cell phone ;-)

S-XSLT processor should be much easier to write than 
it was to write XT ( the same is with SML parser, S-SAX, e t.c.):

    1. All inventions are already in place ;-)
    2. All that is  needed  is 'bugfixing' the existing design 
in some places.
    3. 'Bugfixing'  could often be 'throw away'. 


However, at the first step ( on server side ;-) SML files could be 
processed by XSLT processor, because SML is XML  - no 
big problem here.
> I'm inclined to allow attributes in SML itself but to have a "non-normative
> appendix" that is a fairly integral part of the document explaining that
> attributes are supported only for compatibility reasons and discouraging
> people from using them in "new" SML applications and outlining the various
> attribute-related pitfalls to avoid.

I think it is bad idea. "We give you this feature but you should not use it".

I think it's better not to give that feature at all, because ... Because it'l 
not force us to write S-XSLT, for example. 

And because I think that it would be always possible to solve some 
legacy problem with especial mapping layer ( using XT, for example ) 
to go from SML to  *ML, like people are doing now,  utilizing some 
SGML tools with XML

At the moment there is simply no solid XML-ish way to render the 
XML documents to different media. I think mostly people are 
utilizing SGML-ish tools for such a task, 'converting' XML to SGML. 

I don't understand why can't we do the same with SML, converting it 
to XML ( with belowed attributes ;-). Should be *very* easy with XT, 
right ?


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