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Chapter 15. XML

Chapter 15. XML

HTML is a maverick. It follows the rules of formal electronic document-markup design and implementation only loosely. HTML was born out of the need to assemble text, graphics, and other digital content into electronic documents that could be sent over the global Internet. In the early days of the World Wide Web boom, the demand for better browsers and document servers—driven by hordes of new users with insatiable appetites for more and cooler web pages—left little time for worrying about things like standards and practices.

Of course, without guiding standards, HTML would have eventually devolved into Babel. That almost happened during the browser wars in the mid- to late 90s. Chaos is not an acceptable foundation for an industry whose value is already measured in the trillions of dollars. Although the standards people at the W3C managed to rein in the maverick HTML with standard Version 4, it is still too wild for the royal herd of markup languages.


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