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Re: What is a lightweight language

jmarshall@mak.com wrote:
> > Today, operating systems and programming language distributions ship
> > with an XML parser already installed.
> A 100% compliant one?

According to Microsoft's advertising, MSXML4 is conformant with the
industry conformance tests. I haven't verified myself but I would expect
someone to call them on it if it were not true.

> > Anyhow, MSXML implements far more than an XML parser. It is a COM object
> > exposing SAX, DOM, XPath and XSLT. Still, there is no doubt that
> > S-expressions parsers will always be smaller if only because
> > S-expressions don't have to deal with any Unicode issues.
> I don't see what unicode has to do with anything.

In most older languages, one must implement Unicode before implementing
XML. Decent Unicode support is (in my experience) harder to retrofit
than XML. Java is a newer language with native Unicode support (which is
great) but even it is a little out of date, I believe, with respect to
non-BMP characters. Java also has good XML support today, so the issue
of the difficulty of writing an XML parser is really not interesting
anymore. Yes, conformance questions are still interesting but in my
experience, conformance is easy to achieve by using one of the popular
parsers like Expat, Xerces, MSXML. The last Expat conformance bug that I
ran into (a year ago??) related to a Unicode corner case...

I don't think I have much new to contribute to this thread but I thought
I should answer the question about XML conformance because in my opinion
it isn't really a problem.

 Paul Prescod