[XML-SIG] XML Schema and e-commerce

Paul Prescod paul@prescod.net
Thu, 27 Apr 2000 00:30:00 -0500

Laurent Szyster wrote:
> Paul Prescod wrote:
> >
> > People will get together, and will define reasonable, maintainable
> > document structures because e-commerce cannot afford to fail.
> Yet, the fact that e-commerce cannot afford poor standardization
> does not make the process of standard definition more efficient.

Infinitely efficient, no, but motivation does tend to improve

> Also, "reasonable, maintainable document structures" is a myth.

Do you have any evidence of that? We have applications based on
"maintainable document structures" that have been running for almost a
decade now.

> One data model won't fit all applications. 

That's right. That's *why* you use schema languages, so you can have
different vocabularies based on different data models!

> EDI (EDIFACT, X12, ...) standards have been around for a while now.
> Knowing that there is no such thing as a universal data model, why
> on earth should people invest in a new unproven standard?

Because the existing one is considered broken. Your argument seems to be
"perfection is impossible therefore it is not worth trying to improve at

> People can benefit from XML features (like UNICODE) and the
> availability of commodity software for it by translating EDI
> messages into XML.

If you translate EDI messages into XML, how do you express the XML
structures? That's what schema languages are for.

>  That's a lot faster than waiting for BizTalk
> (or somebody else) to come up with a working standard.

Biztalk isn't a schema language. If you're arguing against Biztalk then
be my guest.

 Paul Prescod  - ISOGEN Consulting Engineer speaking for himself
It's difficult to extract sense from strings, but they're the only
communication coin we can count on. 
	- http://www.cs.yale.edu/~perlis-alan/quotes.html