Fwd: single point of failure, HTML-style

From: Udhay Shankar N (udhay@pobox.com)
Date: Sat Apr 28 2001 - 21:25:39 PDT

<forwards elided>

>Subject: why XML as it presently exists is doomed
>In brief, Netscape removed one file from one server.
>Now a bazillion sites are broken because the file was an XML DTD.
>DTD's live in just one place. By definition.
>if the site goes away or develops a bad attitude (or its operators go out
>of business, decide they don't want to hear your traffic any more, or host
>the server in a power-starved third world region like California) then
>everything that depends on this house of cards... breaks dramatically.
>One poster to Slashdot explained the issue lucidly:
> >Re:Hmmm... (Score:4, Informative)
> >by Drone-X (jonas.devuyst@advalvas.be) on Saturday April 28, @05:01PM
> EST (#31)
> >(User #148724 Info) http://het.belgische.net/~jdv/
> >
> >The article is about RSS files, which are files used mostly by news sites
> >and blogs. They contain a summary of the most recent topics on a
> >site. RSS files were used by my.netscape.com to monitor multiple sites on
> >your MyNetscape page, also they are used in Evolution and the Nautilus
> >has the ability in CVS (under a "News" sidebar IIRC).
> >
> >The problem here is that the RSS format was written in XML and used a DTD
> >(document type definition) that was stored on the Netscape
> >servers. Whenever *someone* *somewhere* tries to parse a RSS file the
> >Netscape server is queried for the file and the RSS file is validated
> >against it. So now that Netscape removed the file people don't get to see
> >the RSS summary but get an error instead.
> >
> >What could be done is putting a copy of the file on an alternate location
> >and changing all RSS files to match the new URI... well, this could be
> >done if it weren't for the fact that Netscape copyrighted the RSS
> >DTD... the only sollution left is to change to the updated RSS format
> >which doesn't depend on Netscape.
>------- End of forwarded message -------

((Udhay Shankar N)) ((udhay @ pobox.com)) ((www.digeratus.com))
      God is silent. Now if we can only get Man to shut up.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Sun Apr 29 2001 - 20:26:19 PDT