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[Axiom-developer] RE: XML

From: Page, Bill
Subject: [Axiom-developer] RE: XML
Date: Wed, 15 Jun 2005 12:04:33 -0400


I think I have already explained why I think both you and Tim
are right but your conclusion is wrong. At the risk of
perpetuating a thread with marginal value, but since every
time I look on the web I find that some else has already said
it better than me, let me just quote Aaron Crane:

"20. Doing It Anyway

    * XML qua technology almost seems to be a bad joke
    * But you have to do it anyway
    * Two main reasons:
         1. It's (just) good enough technologically
         2. More importantly: everyone else is doing it"

"21. Worse is Better

    * XML has many flaws
    * But the esthetic appeal of the technology is comparatively
    * In practice, XML's flaws can be lived with
          o An example of 'worse is better':

"Therefore, the worse-is-better software first will gain acceptance,
second will condition its users to expect less, and third will be
improved to a point that is almost the right thing. In concrete terms,
even though Lisp compilers in 1987 were about as good as C compilers,
there are many more compiler experts who want to make C compilers
better than want to make Lisp compilers better."

"one can conclude only that the Lisp community needs to seriously
rethink its position on Lisp design ..."

          o Since XML is good enough, it isn't worth replacing it"

"27. Conclusions

    * XML does have a number of technological problems, but:
          o The technological problems can be managed
          o The political and commercial advantages of working with
            the same open standard as everyone else are enormous
    * There are open-source and Linux-friendly tools which actually
      help you get your work done in an XML-besotted world, including:
          o GNOME libxml and libxslt
          o SAX-Machines or similar systems
    * XML is here to stay"


>From my point of view, life is too short for me to rewrite
everything I need from scratch (in lisp) to properly apply
computer algebra to theoretical physics, but a little lisp
added in the right place goes a long way, which is why I also
love lisp and plan to use it where it makes the most sense.

Bill Page.

-----Original Message-----
From: Heow Eide-Goodman [mailto:address@hidden
Sent: Wednesday, June 15, 2005 10:37 AM
To: Bill Page (E-mail)
Cc: 'address@hidden'; address@hidden;
Subject: RE: XML

I'll have to agree with Tim on this...

  1. XML is open
  2. XML is standard
  3. XML really sucks

Sometimes you realize that particular practices, procedures and entire
social systems are fundementally broken.  That said, it dosen't mean you
must follow them, especially if it negatively affects your productivity.

Honestly, life is too short for me to deal with things that slow me or
stop me from writing great software, which is one of the reasons I love
and use Lisp.

"Those that do not understand Lisp are doomed to reinvent it, badly."

- Heow

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