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Re: Comments on NODAL paper, 14 June 2001 version

On Thu, 9 Aug 2001, Lee Iverson wrote:    (01)

> The data model is defined such that every *collection* (and NODAL
> supports three types of collections) is a node.  So, a comment block
> in the Java program data model could be defined as a sequence of
> strings.  Reusing such a sequence (or the comment block itself) would
> be pretty simple.  I guess part of the issue is how do you design data
> models to promote component reuse? I do think that there *is* a
> potential issue as to how easy it might be to build data models that
> are difficult to tease apart.    (02)

You get my basic point, but I just want to extend this discussion a little
further for my own edification.  If a comment block is a node, whose type
is a collection of strings, and if I want to track a substring, I still
have the same problem.  You're relying on a path-style address to specify
that substring, and the content of that path address may change if I add
to or subtract from the comment string.    (03)

You phrased it well -- the issue really is designing data models to
promote component reuse.  Different data models are going to be better
suited for certain types of reuse -- as well as other purposes -- and so
it's very important to support multiple data models for a single document
type.    (04)

> Another possibility for handling this (and it came up when I discussed
> this with Doug on Tuesday) would be the liberal use of "path
> functions" (a la XPath).  It would almost certainly be possible to
> define functions (pluggable and well-defined) to access the "third
> paragraph" and "second sentence" of a text block.  That way we
> wouldn't have to worry about data model mapping (yet at least).    (05)

These are two names for the same thing.  Functions that know about
"paragraphs" and "sentences" are implicitly working on another data model
consisting of paragraphs and sentences.    (06)

-Eugene    (07)

+=== Eugene Eric Kim ===== eekim@eekim.com ===== http://www.eekim.com/ ===+
|       "Writer's block is a fancy term made up by whiners so they        |
+=====  can have an excuse to drink alcohol."  --Steve Martin  ===========+    (08)