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Subject: RE: Manifest Element??


I disagree that having two ways to express the same semantic implies "no
harm no foul."  It requires receivers to support both expressions of that
semantic.  And, some receivers could attempt to differentiate leaving out
the Manifest element from an empty Manifest, thereby losing interoperability
with senders that use those two things interchangeably.  The general ways
I've seen optional list containers implemented in XML go with one approach
or the other (not both).  Most lean towards leaving out the list container
when it has no contents.  (That is, the DTD or schema makes the list
container optional and one or more content elements required as we've done
in the ebXMLHeader schema.)  This is the approach we once again ratified on
the call today.


On the general XML usage question, the validity of an XML document is not
enhanced by throwing in lots of empty elements and attributes with no
semantic meaning in that instance.  If the POC has expressed a liking for no
optional (ordinality of 0 allowed) elements in the TRP specification, that's
a new concern to me.  As TRP has been revised, we have in fact moved towards
additional use of optional elements rather than attempting to define null
values for each.  This is in line with most XML-based protocols.


-----Original Message-----
From: Robert Fox [mailto:robertf@softshare.com]
Sent: February 22, 2001 11:19
To: 'Patil, Sanjay'; Ebxml-Transport (E-mail)
Subject: RE: Manifest Element??

If I were implementing an ebXML processor, the absence of a Manifest would
tell me that there is no payload... and I would process the message with
that assumption... if there is an EMPTY Manifest, quite frankly, I would
have done the same. SO if there IS payload in either scenario listed above,
my processing would have been the same, ie... it would have been ignored.
This is why I would say that the Manifest is not required, but if it is
present, and contains no Payload references, no harm no foul... it's just
nice to have a consistent definition... 

-----Original Message-----
From: Patil, Sanjay [mailto:Spatil@netfish.com]
Sent: Thursday, February 22, 2001 11:19 AM
To: Ebxml-Transport (E-mail)
Subject: Manifest Element??

This is about the discussion of empty Manifest element in cases where
there is no payload included in the Message or reference to external.
From whatever I could gather out of my brief sneaking in the conference,
we might specify to not have a Manifest element to indicate no payload.

My question, which could be treated as a more general XML usage question -
In the case of a Manifest element being absent, how can we differentiate
a faulty header and indication of no payload just by processing the Header
having to process the entire message?? If I remember it correct, this is the
argument POC had for not having optional elements.

Sanjay Patil
Work Phone: 408 350 9619

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