RE: [syndication] Namespaces discussion

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From: Scott Sweeney (
Date: Thu Jun 29 2000 - 20:19:06 PDT


I'm just joining in on the RSS discussion, so I hope this is relevant,
respectful, and not redundant...

I think the namespaces are horrendous if you are trying to use them from a
traditional user/programmer perspective, when hand writing or reading them
manually, but from a parser or computer perspective, from what I see, they
can hold amazing value, expandability, and help "enhance the picture" if
anything (..although bandwidth is another story), but I think it boils down
to what your app needs today.

When a parser views namespaced tags, it can easily ignore them and abstract
them from view, unlike a user. I can understand that the benefit of
namespaces sure isn't helpful or apparent for most of todays XML apps
because most (at least I would speculate) are user-oriented, manually-coded
or structured, and used in isolated apps where cross-web-data joins aren't
feasible, scalable or needed. But I think those joins (and ones that can be
made dynamically) will be helpful down the road when the web advances to the
whole "schema is the API" mantra, and the XML store stuff you're working on,
Dave, becomes a reality.

Scott Sweeney

PS - I'd love to hear how Ed is doing the joins.

-----Original Message-----
From: Dave Winer []
Sent: Thursday, June 29, 2000 6:35 PM
Cc: foRK
Subject: [syndication] Namespaces discussion

On Scripting News yesterday I said: "I don't like namespaces. This is based
on my own confusion when I see all those esoteric labels all over XML
documents. I've been very clear about this all along."

On the UserLand discussion group there are two comments from people who I
know to be smart (I've worked with them for years) who agree, Ed Draper and
Paul Howson.$18263$18277

If you want to learn about how busy web developers view namespaces, go
challenge them, ask them questions, try to explain namespaces and why they
are good, but please do it respectfully.

I think we would all learn a lot from the interchange. Maybe you can win Ed
and Paul over. It could be an interesting discussion.


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