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Subject: Re: [ubl-lcsc] Re: Position Paper on List Containers


Thanks very much for the screenshots.  Turns out that actually
trying to use IE this way is a real pain.  :-)

| whilst i agree there is advantage in supporting the use of a
| ubiquitous web browser, you give the impression we don't have this
| ability otherwise.

Sorry.  What I meant was simply what you say in the position

   With respect to readability of XML instances, it could be said
   that when the contained items grows into large lists, then a
   container could be a useful aggregation. However, with such
   repetitious data, humans would probably not be able to process
   the data visually anyway. They may then use products (such as
   Internet Explorer's XML viewer) that create navigable trees. In
   this case the list containers are useful for folding up a
   repeated group of elements that the reader does not want to
   look at.

All I'm saying is, don't minimize the importance of "folding up a
repeated group of elements that the reader does not want to look
at."  That's called information hiding, and it's pretty darned
important.  You're right that this has nothing to do with the
capabilities of the browser, and I erred in phrasing my comment in
a way that encouraged that interpretation.  But in general, it's a
big advantage to structure information in a way that makes hiding
selected pieces of it possible, and without a container, there's
nothing in which to fold things up.

Having said that, I have to admit that you guys have raised some
pretty serious concerns.  I was surprised to read this:

   The UBL Form Presentation group hold no strong opinion on the
   value of such structures to their processing requirements.

That's not at all what I would have expected intuitively, and I
think it somewhat weakens the point I was trying to make about the
user interface.

Metacomment: at least one person took my earlier comment (the one
Tim was replying to above) as a statement ex cathedra.  I only
speak ex cathedra on matters relating to the formal business of
the TC itself (including procedural issues in the SCs insofar as I
am able to interpret the rules we have adopted).  Tim and most of
the other members of the TC are well aware that on all other
subjects I am speaking merely as one of the less clueful
participants, and on these subjects I am quite prepared to be
disabused of my ignorant opinions by the real experts whose work
it is my job to facilitate.  So please don't take what I have to
say on the technical aspects overseriously, because if you do, I
won't be able to say much.


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