[tei-council] namespaces and customization

James Cummings James.Cummings at oucs.ox.ac.uk
Mon Dec 19 03:58:17 EST 2011

On 19/12/11 03:28, Martin Holmes wrote:
> That's a very good question. Personally, I wouldn't have thought that
> customizing an existing element would require moving it to a new
> namespace -- unless you changed it beyond all recognition, but in that
> case I would have thought giving it a new name would make more sense.
> Surely just adding tei:eg to att,typed wouldn't require moving it out of
> the tei: namespace?

I think that is exactly the intention. If you add something to an 
element making it not a pure subset of the original element (conformant) 
or automatically able to be cleanly reversed (conformable) then it is no 
longer the TEI element as the TEI has defined it. Thus should be in a 
new namespace. You don't want to have something that purports to be a 
TEI 'eg' element but has lots of attributes which it doesn't have in the 
TEI, unless these attributes are in a non-TEI namespace. So you could 
add @my:type and @my:subtype to 'eg' and be perfectly TEI conformant, 
but adding att.typed to 'eg' is an unclean change and thus should be 
signalled by a namespace.

I believe that was the thinking at least,


> Cheers,
> Martin
> On 11-12-18 03:28 PM, Kevin Hawkins wrote:
>>      From reading chapter 23 of the Guidelines, I'm unclear on whether you
>> are supposed to define a new namespace for every element or attribute
>> affected by an unclean customization.  I don't see it explicitly stated,
>> but it sounds that way.  For example, in section,<tei:eg>   is
>> modified to add it to att.typed, but as I understand it, the element
>> then moves into a new namespace (http://example.com/ns).  So each
>> instance of<eg>   should actually be<myNamepsace:eg>   instead of
>> <tei:eg>.  Is that right?
>> Furthermore, I see this sentence in section 23.2.2, after a discussion
>> of definining a namespace:
>> "Similar methods may be used if a modification (clean or unclean) is
>> made to the content model or some other aspect of an element, or if it
>> declares a new element."
>> In what cases would you define a new namespace for a clean customization
>> of an element?
>> --Kevin

Dr James Cummings, InfoDev,
Computing Services, University of Oxford

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