(dsssl) XML not appropriate for TEI: (was Hypothetical question on namespaces)

Subject: (dsssl) XML not appropriate for TEI: (was Hypothetical question on namespaces)
From: Trent Shipley <tcshipley@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 4 Oct 2001 10:28:10 -0700
This is an nearly universal assertion.

However one of the guys in the local Phoenix Linux users group who works on 
the dbXML project slapped me down hard when I wanted to mark up my 
Dissertation in XML.

He said, "SGML is for hand work and narrative documents XML is for automation 
and encoding non-narrative data.  I don't care what the books say.  I've been 
in this field for a long time and they are wrong."

So I worked for a couple days in XML and then used some SGML shortcuts, then 
I decided it was much easier to code without the stricter XML rules.

So this raises real issues about whether XML is appropriate for TEI.

1) It is used for small projects

2) The projects tend to be in the Humanities so they have limited funds.

3) By its very nature coding representations of manuscripts tends to require 
dedicated scholarly work, so nearly any learning curve can be paid.  
Therefore, coding can be done by hand.

4) #1 #2 #3 argue against widespread idiot-friendly automation of TEI tools.

5) TEI document bases tend to be externally documented and distributed in a 
limited and close-knit community.  The documents need to be exchangeable but 
the exchange does not have to be fast, easy, or entirely automatic.

6) Markup for the humanities can benefit from the allow and restrict SGML 
features, the so-far unused concurent markup feature, and runs into XML 
restrictions.  For example, there is no gurantee that elements will nest when 
describing real human communication or artifacts.  You can work around this 
in XML with liberal use of anchors and pointers but it is very hard for 
humans to work that way.

> Both Docbook and TEI
> would say immediately that XML is the way of the future...
> Sebastian

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