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Regarding timing: 

1) the Schema WG intends to advance the work to the next step
    at the end of the month. Last Call will last approx 5 weeks.
    If there is no significant changes required, then we will go
    to Candidate Recommendation. 

    Candidate Rec is designed for work that is essentially finished
    but needs to be supported by the community. This is a relatively
    new state for the W3C. During this phase it is appropriate to
    engineering work but be aware there may be some changes.
    Most of the WG hopes CR will last 3 to 4 months. Exit from
    Candidate Rec is when there is implementation experience.
    Net: July-Aug is when we hope Schema 1.0 will be done.

2) As a practical engineer, I would agree with the idea of 
    expressing the structure and constraints in a meta-language
    which then is expressed in either DTDs or XML Schemas or
    perhaps in other syntax like eDTD.

    The there are two concerns with this approach: spending too
    much effort on the formality of the meta-language and limiting
    the information models to what DTDs can express. Both are 

    On projects I work on, I use english in a table format for 
    semantic description and constraints and relatively
    flat structures shown by nesting. This is enough for me,
    but the messages are simple.

David is right to point out the counter to my optimistic 
perspective. As much as I and the WG want XML Schemas to work
for everyone, there are many details and issues that will need
time to work out. 

I do not know the right way to have typical business people
express business data models. While DTDs may be accepted now,
my experience shows that these can also be difficult and inaccurate.
Frankly, I hope the UI vendors will intervene and provide quality
tools that make schemas accessible. 

Dave Hollander

Dave Hollander
Director eCommerce Knowledge Management and Interoperability
Co-chair W3C XML Schema Working Group

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