Subject: Re: Lisp XML parser ?
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 2000/06/23
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Simon Brooke <>
| Is not an entity more or less equivalent to a read macro?

  No.  Neither more nor less.  The Lisp reader returns whole Lisp
  objects from its reader macro functions, which is eminently doable
  because Lisp has syntax with a defined meaning.  Entities are
  sources of characters that sort of "precede" lexical analysis, but
  there are rules for where the end of an entity may occur, so the
  Entity end "signal" is a special input event.  Case in point: When
  you give the string "foo&dash;bar" to the parser, and suppose you
  have defined dash to mean the string "--", the parser will actually
  see "foo&dash;--|bar", where | has the role of the Entity end.  Both
  the start and end of an entity are at the same level as all other
  syntax in SGML, but the parsed result may or may not need to know
  this depending on whether you intend to reconstruct the entity
  structure (as in edit them) or process the element structure.

| There's nothing very magical about it... unless I'm
| missing something very badly?

  I think I have made a case for for "magical", if not "very magical".

  If this is not what you expected, please alter your expectations.