fixing (just) namespaces and validation

james anderson James.Anderson at
Thu Sep 9 19:25:39 BST 1999

Philip Nye wrote:
> i wrote:
> ...
> > > So, to validate with namespaces, you either have to pre-process the
> > > document instance to normalise the prefixes to the prefix used in the
> > > DTD,
> >
> > No, the processing happens in the course of parsing. There is no need for an
> > additional pass. No, it is better to map them all to a symbol associated with
> > the universal name. The prefixes are superfluous.
> Conceptually this is still pre-processing, even if the two are
> integrated in a
> single pass.

In the same sense that the conversion from a bit string to characters is preprocessing.

The distinction is, that the original proposals for "normalizing" such
documents suggested that the process was something which would be done in
addition to basic parsing. My argument, at the time, was that this is
something the parsers should be doing anyway.

> This means that in David Megginson's layered model, the document
> bounces up and down between layers in an inelegant and to my mind
> very wasteful way, during the course of its processing. This is a
> result of the inflexibility of the DTD or perhaps of the
> incompatibility of namespaces.

This may be true in in terms of the Megginson model. There are other models.
In one of them, there all names are universal names.  Even in the XML layer. I
simply don't buy a layered approach with respect to names. The recent concern
about the number of namespaces in XHTML bears this out.

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