Why namespaces?

Mark Birbeck Mark.Birbeck at iedigital.net
Wed Sep 1 17:39:36 BST 1999

Simon St.Laurent wrote:
> At 09:17 AM 9/1/99 +0800, James Tauber wrote:
> >"we would only need separate namespaces for each flavour of 
> > XHTML if people are going to want to mix the three flavours
> > in the one document and distinguish the different usages
> > of the element/attributes names in the intersection."
> Simple, clean, cuts to the heart of the matter.

'fraid I don't agree. For the *legacy* HTML you may still need to
distinguish where it came from when it is being processed as XHTML. You
might have a MathML document that contains an element that can contain
some XHTML, but the source of that XHTML could be any of the three
variants of HTML. Or you might want to convert data in a table in an
HTML 4.0 strict document to one XML tag, and data in a table in an HTML
4.0 transitional document to another XML element, but treat the rest of
the tags the same, *and* only write one XSL stylesheet.

Obviously when everything has been tidied up, and modules of XHTML are
being used, then you will only need the namespaces for the modules you
want to use, and there will be no need for three.


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