[svlug] XML vs HTML

Karl F. Larsen k5di at zianet.com
Tue Jul 10 05:21:01 PDT 2001

On Sun, 8 Jul 2001, Dan Martinez wrote:

> Karl F. Larsen wrote:
> > I have been reading about a new file markup system called XML. There
> > are books out on the language that are not real expensive.

> XML isn't a markup language. It's a specification for the creation of
> markup languages, which are known as "applications". There are many
> XML applications already, with more appearing on a regular basis. A
> few, off the top of my head:
>   MathML: A markup language for the expression of mathematical
> 	  formulae.

	I think I have a MathML written in SGML. It's part of the SGML
tutorial and I used it whole cloth. No Silver Bullet but using that and
sgml2html did the trick very well.

> The XML hype isn't quite as bad these days as it used to be, but a
> rant a friend wrote some years back about a particularly egregious
> "XML will make absolutely everything interoperable!" piece on CNN is
> still worth reading. I'll close with that:
> 	CNN talks in glowing terms about what XML could bring in a few
> 	years if everyone got their act together, and acts like it
> 	will be ready for you to use in just months.
> 	XML is like ODBC. It's just an enabling technology. It doesn't
> 	do anything cool on its own. About all it does is let you
> 	write a parser and have a pretty good idea that the parser
> 	will work. That's powerful, but knowing what to do with what
> 	you just parsed is something entirely different.
> 	Put in different terms, this article is essentially saying
> 	"now that we have VHS, anyone can instantly view and
> 	understand all videotapes," without touching on things like
> 	PAL, SECAM, NTSC, differences in spoken languages, or the fact
> 	that French Surrealist films are just not interchangable with
> 	industrial training videos.
> 	Repeat after me:
> 				    -- Faisal Jawdat

	The quote is true, and one author stated that XML is a subset of
SGML. So we Linux geeks don't need XML, we just need to USE SGML.

Yours Truly,

  	 - Karl F. Larsen, k5di at arrl.net  (505) 524-3303  -

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