Subject: Re: The horror that is XML From: Erik Naggum <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Wed, 06 Mar 2002 00:37:01 GMT Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp Message-ID: <email@example.com> * Kenny Tilton | I haven't seen what the Economist has to say, but XML /will/ be the next | big thing if it works out as a lingua franca for data exchange. Not | saying XML does not suck from the syntax standpoint, just that syntax | can be fixed or (more likely) hidden. XML would not be so bad as it is if it were possible to pin down how to represent it in the memory of a computer. At this time, the most common suggestion is _vastly_ worse than anything a Common Lisp programmer would whip up in a drunken stupor. DOM, SAX, XSLT, whatever the hell these moreons are re-inventing, XML _could_ have been a pretty simple and straight-forward syntax for a pretty simple and straight-forward external representation of in-memory objects. This is manifestly _not_ the case, since so much irrelevant crap has to be carried around in order to output the same XML you read in. There are certain mistakes people who have been exposed to Common Lisp are not likely to make when it comes to mapping internal and external representations of various object types. Every single one of those mistakes has been made by the XML crowd, which is not very surprising, considering the intense disdain for computer science that underlies the SGML community -- they wanted to save their documents from the vagaries of application programmers! Instead, they went into exactly the same trap as every retarded application programmer has fallen into with their eyes closed. And of _course_ Microsoft thinks it is so great -- XML embodies the same kinds of mistakes that they are known for in their proprietary unreadable "document" formats. All in all, a tragedy that could have been avoided if they had only listened to people who knew how computer scientists had been thinking about the same problem before them -- but they would never listen, SGML was a political creation from before it was born, and nobody should tell them how to do their stuff after it had been standardized, lest it be deemed to have errors and mistakes... Instead, we get anti-computer anti-scientists meddling with stuff they have no hope of ever getting right, and certainly not be able to fix. XML will go down with Microsoft, whose Steve Ballmer has now threatened to withdraw Windows XP from the market and not do any more "innovation" because of the demands made by the government lawsuits! Next, we will see organized crime barons around the world threaten to stop trafficking drugs if the police do not stop harassing them. That would certainly stop the world economy! Steve Ballmer has once again demonstrated why the evil that is Microsoft must be stopped _before_ it acquires enough power to actually hurt anyone by making such threats. /// -- In a fight against something, the fight has value, victory has none. In a fight for something, the fight is a loss, victory merely relief.