>From: "Bruce D'Arcus" <[log in to unmask]>
>On 7/22/05, Karen Coyle <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> So again I ask: is there a reason NOT to use elements
Nor is there any reason TO use elements only and not to use attributes.
I really thought that the attribute vs. element debate ran its useful course
a few years ago. I don't find that the debate has shed any additional light
during the past couple years than the previous several years. It's fine to
argue case-by-case that a specific information type should be cast as an
element and not an attribute, or an attribute and not an element. But
generalization, or even trying to come up with hard rules of thumb, just
seem to me to have proven futile.
One can of course argue that attributes should never have been included in
the XML specification, that it's a classic case of overengineering a
standard (or an un-necessary carryover from SGML). Those who have an intense
interest in this issue should petition the W3C to eliminate attributes in
XML version 2. But for the present we're dealing with XML version 1.
I don't see that rdf adds anything to this debate.
(And as an aside, it would seem rather arrogant of rdf to insist that we
build xml without attributes -- if indeed that's what rdf is insisting, and
I'm not convinced -- when rdf itself couldn't exist without them, as
illustrated for example by: <mads:otherRelation
rdf:resource="Systems_Analysis"/>; so rdf must think that attributes are
And this thread seems to have also spun a sub-topic about mixed-content, the
best I can tell, the assertion is: yes we can make mads more rdf friendly by
eliminating attributes, but only as long as we also adopt a mixed content
model. Well we all know that's never going to happen. So that would seem
to imply that eliminating attributes is futle, wouldn't it? And it seems
that Bruce has demonstrated that you can, with some creativity, describe
mads with rdf, attributes notwithstanding.