Namespace question: Do attributes inherit the element's namespace?

John Aldridge john.aldridge at
Fri Jan 7 11:06:45 GMT 2000

At 12:14 06/01/00 -0800, Tim Bray <tbray at> wrote:
>>> Basically, then, the main question was whether the attribute names in
>>> the following two examples are identical:
>>>   <html:a href="foo">
>>>   <html:a html:href="foo">

>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.

The trouble with #3 is that it makes the semantics of an XML document
depend on its consuming application, not its originating application.  XML
provides a tool for publishing data so that it can be processed by a wide
range of applications over which the author has no control.  These
consuming applications should not, IMHO, have been given the option of
misinterpreting the data in this way.

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