[SML] Numeric character references

rev-bob at gotc.com rev-bob at gotc.com
Sun Nov 28 15:20:49 GMT 1999

> > > I just do not see the point of offering both hex and decimal.
> > > Convenience doesn't fly since writer might be used to hex and
> > > the reader might be used to decimal.
> >
> > Funny - that's exactly why convenience DOES fly.  If I'm used to hex and you're
> > used to decimal, doesn't it make sense to allow both?  It's a trivial conversion
> > that makes for a lot more ease for users - allowing both is a no-brainer
> I agree with Don here.  Accomodating the coder's convenience in the language
> itself is the first step on the road to another SGML.  A higher level tool
> or API can easily handle the conversion, so put it there, not in the parser.

And here I thought the whole purpose of SML was to make things simpler for the 
*user*, not to make things easier on lazy programmers.  Silly me.

BTW, if you're going to need a higher-level tool or an API, why bother switching from 
XML in the first place?  Just write a tool or an API that has SML's training wheels, and 
tie it to a full-blown XML parser....

I guess what this boils down to for me is that, to represent complex data, you have to 
have some minimum level of complexity somewhere.  You can play the shell game of 
API vs. HLT vs. parser vs. document code all you want, but the complexity has to be 
there somewhere.  Passing something as simple as hex <=> dec conversion over to a 
different component doesn't remove the complexity - it just shuffles it around.

 Rev. Robert L. Hood  | http://rev-bob.gotc.com/
  Get Off The Cross!  | http://www.gotc.com/

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