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Subject: Re: [codelist] code list validation

Thanks for this, Ray!

At 2006-09-07 16:30 -0400, Ray Denenberg, Library of Congress wrote:
>One of our interests at the Library of Congress  is to be able to point to
>an external codelist, rather than include it within an XML schema. (I'm not
>talking about validating, which I accept is out-of-scope.)

So, perhaps, this would be for guiding data entry 
using a tool that only supported W3C Schema?

>In other words, instead of saying:
><xsd:restriction base="xsd:string">
><xsd:enumeration value="1"/>
><xsd:enumeration value="2"/>
><xsd:enumeration value="3"/>
><xsd:enumeration value="4"/>
><xsd:enumeration value="5"/>
><xsd:enumeration value="6"/>
><xsd:enumeration value="7"/>
>You could say:
><xsd:restriction base="xsd:string" codelist="http://....."/>
>There is no such syntax yet (that I'm aware of), most likely because there
>is no standard codelist format yet. But it might be as simple as above --
>defining a 'codelist' attribute on the restriction element within the schema
>language. Of course it would need to be accepted into the language by the

The XML nature of any code list representation 
would allow you to transform your "master" 
genericode expression into the existing W3C Schema expression.

>(I know there are suggested approaches using 'import' and 'include' but
>these are too sloppy.

An interesting adjective to use ... though I 
agree these constructs in W3C Schema are somewhat 
limited.  The RELAX-NG equivalents appear to me 
to have more power.  To me rather than being 
"sloppy" they are too rigid in W3C 
Schema.  Import and include provide very useful 
modularization facilities in standards like W3C Schema, RELAX-NG, XSLT, etc.

>We currently use comments or annotations to point to
>external lists. But when we have a standard format for a codelist, and if
>there is syntax to point to it, people will begin to develop validation
>I think this would have significant utility, and it seems so simple.

Yes, though it does seem repetitive in that it 
duplicates existing functionality (however 
limited the enumeration of a set of values is that is already there).

>it be reasonable for this TC to formulate a recommendation along these
>lines, and forward it to the W3C?

There are procedures to do so, but in my 
standards experience I have not seen the 
introduction of something new that supplants 
something that exists.  What features of 
genericode do you think would overwhelmingly 
convince the W3C Schema committee that a new 
requirement is being met that is not being met by 
the existing standard?  It would be on such a 
basis that this would even be considered by them.

What I believe you *have* identified is a 
specific committee deliverable which could be, 
say, an XSLT stylesheet that converts an instance 
of genericode into an instance of W3C Schema 
enumerations suitable for incorporation into an existing W3C Schema expression.

Then users of genericode would be in a position, 
when setting up, say, an authoring environment, 
to run a workflow process each time a genericode 
file is updated to simultaneously synthesize a 
parallel W3C Schema expression of the enumeration 
suitable for all tasks based on that 
technology.  Same for RELAX-NG.  One could even 
produce an external parameter entity for use with 
DTD-expressed constraints.  I can picture that 
our deliverable could include each of these as 
supplemental tools tuned to the particular delivery of genericode.

I look forward to any other opinions by group members.

Thanks again, Ray!

. . . . . . . . . . .  Ken

UBL/XML/XSLT/XSL-FO training: Vårø, Denmark 2006-10-02/06,11-20/24
UBL International 2006  2006-11-13/17 http://www.ublconference.com
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