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Subject: RE: XML Syntax/Semantics

MILR: Responses imbedded.


I think there are a couple of alternative solutions to these issues:

MILR: Just a couple?!  

1. XPath

MILR: A 'Semantic ID' that used XLINK/XPOINTER/XPATH syntax to access
semantic information as needed would be deep cool, and sounds very XML

2. namespaces

MILR: Namespace can help avoid element name clashes, but IMO it doesn't
addresss the equivalence of semantic entities across namespaces.

Each option should be explored for possible appication within the ebXML
header specification.

I firmly believe the issues you raise, relative to the actual business
transactions, needs to be addressed by the parties responsible for
specifying these standards (e.g. OTA, et al).

MILR:  I believe ebXML must adopt some XML syntax rules that adequately
address the issue of semantics.  If there is a best practice already
invented that addresses this, we could adopt it.  I've seen several examples
of concrete XML syntax in the efforts of others, but I've not seen one that
adequately addresses the issue of semantics.  The X12 TR acknoweldged the
need, and took a first stab at a syntax. I'm convinced a better solution is
needed and feasible.  IMO, we in ebXML have work to do on this topic.  If
one examines the diagram developed by the Technical Architecture group, it
would seem the XML stuff falls in the 'Syntax/Schema' box in the 'Common
Technical Architecture'.  If folks outside the current ebXML community have
an interest, then by all means they should participate in the effort.
Within ebXML, I believe the work could be done either within one of the
existing teams, or in some new team.  I believe the work effort would be
hindered if split across teams.    
I would like to think that the syntax/semantic solution would be such that
it could be retrofitted on existing XML/EDI DTD's, such as those of
RosettaNet, BizTalk, et al.  Just identify the semantic units,
register/reposit (how's that for a word?) new semantic unists as necessary,
and lay into the existing DTD/Schema the Semantic ID pointers.



Dick Brooks

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