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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
Bruce Patin13-Jan-21 6:12
MemberBruce Patin13-Jan-21 6:12 
GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
Peter Adam13-Jan-21 6:18
professionalPeter Adam13-Jan-21 6:18 
GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
Roger Wright13-Jan-21 9:07
professionalRoger Wright13-Jan-21 9:07 
GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
trønderen13-Jan-21 10:53
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
chrisseanhayes13-Jan-21 9:18
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
Chris Maunder13-Jan-21 9:34
cofounderChris Maunder13-Jan-21 9:34 
GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
chrisseanhayes13-Jan-21 10:20
Memberchrisseanhayes13-Jan-21 10:20 
GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
trønderen13-Jan-21 10:06
Membertrønderen13-Jan-21 10:06 
chrisseanhayes wrote:
Is it 'easily' human-readable? Most but not all the time, still useful.
Almost twenty years ago, when XML was super-hype, I was involved in digital library projects. Everyone was praising XML as The Savior, the greatest thing since sliced bread. I went to a Digital Libraries conference: Of the first eleven papers presented, ten was making a big issue of XML adoption being crucial to their project's success...

I got XML up to here. Much because of the extreme hype, the total lack of any critical evaluation of its suitability, and stereotypical praise of such "qualities" as "human readable". You don't even need a scheme - the tags are self-documenting!

They are? I went to one of Sami speaking guys, to give me a list of Sami language terms for chapter, section, paragraph, table of contents etc., as well as some Sami text, and composed a sample Sami XML document. This I frequently used to illustrate the "readability" of XML.

(Note that the Sami culture in Norway is quite strong, and it is certainly to be expected that a digital library receives XML documents according to a scheme specifying Sami tags. Or, if your library handles XML documents of Asian origin, don't be surprised if tags contain, say, Chinese or Thai characters.)

A second example I uses involved a 'p' tag. What can we expect it to identify? A paragraph? A part number? A person reference? I could show actual examples of all three interpretations, but made up other possible uses: A point, a position, a product name, a page number ... When you see a 'p' tag, you immediately understand that it has something to do with something relating to the letter p, most likely some concept that starts with 'p' ... in some language. It doesn't have to be English. In an international world, you cannot take for granted that the scheme designer prioritizes readability for native English speakers over readability for the native speakers of the language of the document.

This project I was on was focused on long term document archival: As far as possible, a faithful reproduction of the original should be possible fifty years from now, a hundred years, or more. So, from different document format specifications, I collected no less than fourteen different parameters affecting the formatting of a paragraph. Some day many years from now, you are to interpret a document with a lot of 'avsnitt' tags. After some searching, you realize that 'avsnitt' is Norwegian for 'paragraph', but which of the fourteen formatting/layout parameters applies, and in which way, for making a faithful reproduction of this document?

The 'readability' and 'self describing' properties of XML may be for HelloWorld level examples, but for general real world, full blown applications, it is clearly nowhere close to good enough. (Or if you want: A joke.)

For simplistic, limited scope documents in a limited context, XML may be sufficient. But certainly not for a general digital document library.
GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
chrisseanhayes13-Jan-21 10:16
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
englebart13-Jan-21 10:25
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
Stefan_Lang13-Jan-21 10:45
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AnswerRe: Why is XML? Pin
Member 1494407415-Jan-21 3:59
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
af122117-Jan-21 8:49
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
BotReject18-Jan-21 3:44
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
Member 1485238518-Jan-21 16:11
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GeneralRe: Why is XML? Pin
Matt McGuire22-Jan-21 6:49
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GeneralUmm is everybody busy? Pin
glennPattonWork312-Jan-21 2:54
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
Slacker00712-Jan-21 3:09
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
RickZeeland12-Jan-21 3:15
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
  Forogar  12-Jan-21 3:28
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
RickZeeland12-Jan-21 3:36
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
MarkTJohnson12-Jan-21 3:40
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
den2k8812-Jan-21 3:46
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
  Forogar  12-Jan-21 4:32
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GeneralRe: Umm is everybody busy? Pin
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