[len:QOTD] Ready, Fire, Aim

by M. David Peterson

Update: len trumps his own QOTD with these two gems. I'll let you decide which you feel is funnier/more accurate, cuz' I can't decide,

I try to tell him that no element is *really* non-terminating but he gets wrapped up in the language abstraction and forgets to breathe.


.. or ..

We made this a lot harder than it has to be in the name of "just in case."


[Original Post]
Is it really that taxing... - O'Reilly XML Blog

Most of the time when I find a programmer struggling with XML, they are a relational database programmer or an object-oriented programmer, or both. We should have lined these guys up against the wall at the beginning of the revolution, really.



NOTE: I met Jeff Atwood for the first time a month or two back. Nice guy. Obviously an OO-trained programmer. But a nice guy, none-the-less. ;-)

4 Comments

Eric
2008-05-12 19:53:04
HA, I agree man. Nothing like some FLWOR expressions to start of my day ;)
len
2008-05-13 06:08:50
Likely he is, Dave. It is just so much fun watching all the carnage XML causes because we tried to make it simple and then everything and everyone piled on to add their little bits.


I have a programmer down the hall wrestling with XML Schema and the 99 yards of bloatware Visual Studio provides for serializing an XML instance from relational data. I am tempted to tell him to toss it and just script a cursor to the file the old fashioned way. He hit an element with a non-terminating element inside and it baffles him. I try to tell him that no element is *really* non-terminating but he gets wrapped up in the language abstraction and forgets to breathe.


We made this a lot harder than it has to be in the name of "just in case".

M. David Peterson
2008-05-13 06:29:38
@len,


Hilarious! I'm trying to decide which quote is better,


"I try to tell him that no element is *really* non-terminating but he gets wrapped up in the language abstraction and forgets to breathe."


.. or ..


"We made this a lot harder than it has to be in the name of "just in case."


?


I think I'll update the post with both and let the community decide which they like best. ;-)

len
2008-05-13 11:59:18
The original comment was about "xml tax" and shoe horning applications into XML when it isn't appropriate. It seems to me that we've been shoehorning from day one of the HTML-endowed Internet. Be honest. Do you think forms really should be in HTML? Should we be aggregating markup into namespaces without being able to enforce semantic coherence? Should cellphones be used to navigate Second Life? Should browsers be used to build 3D?


Shoehorning is a force fit with the expectation that the toes will adapt or the leather will expand. Given enough force, one of the other will or the owner will give up shoes.


As long as the use of the shoehorn doesn't preclude owning a better fit, (using XSD doesn't mean "RELAX MUST DIE") or any of the other non-option outcomes, it doesn't bother me that people use XML for things it isn't optimal for. My reply was meant to be humor in response to the tax meme. In fact, we've been trying to force fit applications onto the web that probably shouldn't be there from day one, and a lot of progress has been made as a result, and also, not insignificant devolution.


The MID was a nutty idea when we introduced it because we were force-fitting GUIs into declarative markup. Now its non-legitimate descendants (XUL, XForms, XAML, etc.) are not even controversial. From time to time, sore toes knows.