[XML-SIG] Package borderlines and overlap (and versions)

Dinu Gherman gherman@darwin.in-berlin.de
Sat, 02 Mar 2002 12:08:08 +0100 (CET)


I'm doing some little benchmarking of Python XML tools and
what to write a header about the used components. This leads
to some latent confusion on my side being more exposed now.

It's about the borderlines and overlap of these packages:

  1. the XML tools in the Python standard library
  2. the pyXML extensions
  3. the 4Suite extensions

What is not quite clear to me, admittedly not yet a Python/XML
"power user", is if and which parts of entry N above do really
replace/overwrite parts in N-i (0<i<N)?

If I do this:

  >>> import xml
  >>> xml.__version__

I obviously get the version number of pyXML, but if I use Python
2.3a0 without any additional XML packages I get this:

  >>> import xml
  >>> xml.__version__

Then, back on my Python 2.2, I see that I can import Ft (a rather
short module name, BTW - why not FourThought?) directly, to get 
something like this:

  >>> import Ft
  >>> Ft.__version__
  >>> Ft.__pyxml_version__

I could probably continue to describe such cases, but I'd rather end 
with four short questions that might better explain my confusion:

  1. does is make any sense to speak of versions for the 
     XML tools in the stdlib? (I did that above, but maybe
     that's plain nonsense. Is the XML stuff in the stdlib
     further developped, BTW?)
  2. what is the canonical way to determine programmatically
     which versions of the XML tools in the stdlib, pyXML
     and 4Suite one is using and/or if they are installed
     at all?
  3. is there a way/document/figure to explain (easily) how 
     all these components interact and how they overlap if 
     they do overlap?
  4. is there a "road map" for some other way of structuring,
     packaging and/or distributing all these modules and/or
     is it planned to gradually shift modules from N to 
     N-i (0<i<N) in my first list above?

Please don't get me wrong - I love what is available from the
XML-SIG and highly appreciate what all of you did! I just have 
a slight feeling that it could be easier to use -- maybe. But
then, perhaps it's just my own sillyness...?

Best regards,