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entity-resolution message

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Subject: Possible slight inconsistency in spec

Reading through spec-2001-05-25, I noticed the following

If system identifiers are preferred, a system identifier was provided, and there
is no matching system type entry, then the system identifier is used as the URI
regardless of any public identifier. This Standard does not specify what happens
if a preferred system identifier does not identify an accessible storage object;
an application may look up the public identifier and/or entity name to find
another URI, or it may simply report an error. An application should at least
have the option of issuing a warning if the system identifier fails in this

and then shortly afterwards

A public or delegatePublic entry encountered when prefer is "system" will be
ignored during lookups for which the external identifier has an explicit system
identifier. No other entry types are affected by the prefer attribute. The
initial search strategy in force at the beginning of each catalog entry file
depends on the preference as determined by the application.

The former paragraph suggests that public identifiers can be used if system
identifiers fail, while the second paragraph could be construed as implicitly
suggesting that "public" entries must be ignored when a system identifier has
been specified.  To me, this seems to be a minor inconsistency.  Does anyone
else agree?  Worth changing to mention that the latter paragraph applies when
the system identifier is valid?

Anthony B. Coates
Leader of XML Architecture & Design
Chief Technology Office
Reuters Plc, London.

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