Namespace question: Do attributes inherit the element's

John Cowan cowan at
Fri Jan 7 03:33:57 GMT 2000

Tim Bray scripsit:

> The namespace spec could have said one of three things:
> 1. These must always be treated as identical
> 2. These must always be treated as different
> 3. Applications can make up their minds
> The then-Working Group eventually went for #3.  It's kind of like
> non-Euclidean geometries; each of the three options above produces a
> self-consistent universe, so the only question is, which one do we
> want to live in?  

Actually #2 and #3 amount to the same thing.  There's no way a standard
can say that an application *must* distinguish between things.
If an application chooses to treat the attributes "luxuryyacht" and
"throatwarblermangrove" as having the same significance, then
no standard can prevent it.

John Cowan                                   cowan at
       I am a member of a civilization. --David Brin

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