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Subject: RE: [office] OFFICE-3311 - Identifiers - review and consolidate identifiers and references to identifiers

I think you will run into trouble where the previous use of the name is not restricted to an NCName that is capable of being an IDREF.  There are new uniqueness requirements and schema validation cases that come up with such a move as well.

Furthermore, the uses of the names that are actually references may refer to targets that are not in the same file, and if the target is to be of type ID (that is, an xml:id), we have to change the referring instance of the name from a different file into an IRI.  (Styles are an obvious case of this but I suspect there are others.)

Furthermore, use of xml:id is going to run the risk of collisions where there is and RDF metadata file that makes reference to an element via its xml:id and the implementation not being designed to preserve that possibility let alone be aware of it.

Finally, this is a dramatic breaking change.  Considering how peculiarly the few cases were handled in ODF 1.2 (where we were talking about attributes of type ID), I have no confidence in a blanket change of this magnitude.

 - Dennis

PS: My druthers, before it is too late to close this door, would be to avoid using xml:id for anchors that are part of the document structure that stitches together elements of an ODF document.  Instead, use NCNames (not ID or IDREF) for such connections, leaving xml:id as arbitrary targets into document for use by other applications, in-document RDFa, separate RDF metadata, etc.  This eliminates the uniqueness-among-all ID problem for structural cross-references and has xml:id be the only ID-valued attribute.

-----Original Message-----
From: Patrick Durusau [mailto:patrick@durusau.net] 
Sent: Tuesday, January 18, 2011 12:06
To: office
Subject: [office] OFFICE-3311 - Identifiers - review and consolidate identifiers and references to identifiers


For identifiers we use text:name, style:name and other various


Since names are sometimes displayed and yet must also server as
identifiers, that means some names are subject to restrictions, such as
no spaces, that other names are not. 

I propose that we use xml:id as the universal identifier for ODF
elements. All pointing is made to an xml:id.

Where necessary for other purposes, such as display to users, the
various *:name attributes can be retained but for use as names.

I see three advantages to this change:

1) Implementors have to implement one pointing mechanism, not several.

2) Localization requires only changing the display string, not internal
pointing mechanisms.

3) Depending on the internal processing model, implementations do not
have to store names used as targets. It is sufficient that the
pointer/target is generated when the document is saved. 

I am willing to make a list of the elements with attributes that point
to other elements, the nature of that pointing mechanism and any other
use that is made of either the pointer or target. Along with suggested
language deprecating the current mechanisms. (I would prefer to delete
it but suspect some transition time has to be allowed for existing

Hope everyone is having a great day!

Patrick Durusau
Chair, V1 - US TAG to JTC 1/SC 34
Convener, JTC 1/SC 34/WG 3 (Topic Maps)
Editor, OpenDocument Format TC (OASIS), Project Editor ISO/IEC 26300
Co-Editor, ISO/IEC 13250-1, 13250-5 (Topic Maps)

Another Word For It (blog): http://tm.durusau.net
Homepage: http://www.durusau.net
Twitter: patrickDurusau
Newcomb Number: 1

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