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Subject: Re: [ubl-comment] Code list rules document

The NDR group was trying to stay away from dictating the XML 
representation of the actual codes for any list, because UBL itself is 
able to be agnostic on this.  (UBL doesn't want to be in the code list 
business at all, if it can help it!)  The rules we've developed allow 
for a clean layering of implementation, so that you can have a 
plug-in/library/whatever for particular code lists that is separable 
from the UBL-specific handling.

However, if our other recommendations start to be widely adopted, I 
suppose the issue of XML representations for codes could be an eventual 
direction for our NDR work if someone else doesn't get there first. 
(I've occasionally heard of some projects like this...)

In any case, though, XSD isn't capable of capturing the context-specific 
constraints that you talk about below.  For example, if you have two 
elements inside a code, one for the "higher-order bit" (like country) 
and one for the "lower-order bit" (like region within a country), XSD 
won't allow you to forbid the choice of "Languedoc" in the lower-order 
element based on "USA" being the content of the higher-order one.

You'd need something more like Schematron or RELAX NG (?) for these 
sorts of constraints.  Actually, RDF would be an interesting choice 
because it allows for arbitrary graphed relationships, not just hierarchies.


Philip Goatly wrote:
> Hi Eve,
>   Thanks for your prompt reply. What you say is quite true there are a number
> of ways of handling hierarchical code lists.
>  The question is what should be recommended and can we have a Schema for the 
> recommendation.
>   Lets take a very simple example. Countries and their sub regions(States US, France Departements,
>   UK Counties, Germany Laender  etc.in one list.
>  At the country level we have established code lists.Quite clearly if a user selects US as the country
>  he/she cannot select Languedoc as the region since that is peculiar to France. Also bear in mind that
>  there may be no set of codes for the UK counties - just the names in full.
>  Another question the above scenario raises is where does the 'data' end and where does the particular
> implementation - in s/w terms begin.
> Cheers, Phil.

Eve Maler                                        +1 781 442 3190
Sun Microsystems                            cell +1 781 883 5917
XML Web Services / Industry Initiatives      eve.maler @ sun.com

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