At 2018-05-17T12:45:50-04:00, John Clements wrote:

> Honestly, reading that snippet … suggests to me that make-parser might
> not actually be useful without all of the other internal ssax
> functions, and that perhaps make-parser really shouldn’t be exported,
> after all :).

If you wish, pending further discussion, you can revert your recent
commit, and return the code to the state when ssax:make-parser was not
exported by sxml.

> Is it possible to formulate productive uses of make-parser that don’t
> require a bunch of other functions in the ssax module?

Oleg Kiselyov's examples remove-markup and outline don't need anything
other than ssax:make-parser, provided one ignores warning about PIs.  As
David Mertz wrote in his old article on SXML, "By the way, warnings are
generated for the unprocessed PIs, so I redirect STDERR to ignore
those." (

> Alternatively, perhaps we can come up with good documentation for a
> whole suite of useful functions, and expose them all?

Good documentation for SXML is an urgent necessity.  Kiselyov's comments
in his source files, and his articles, are beyond the grasp of someone
like me, whose domain is not computer science.  I have to surmise the
behaviour of the make-parser function by applying it to different
inputs.  For instance, one of my examples indicates that the SSAX parser
treats character entities in the text of an element as a separate event,
and as far as I can see there is no way to specify a handler for that
event.  (As I struggled with the example, I was almost tempted by the two
well-written XSLT books by Kay and by Tidwell that were on my table.)

Anyway, what I wanted to say was that I can help with the documentation.
However, I will need guidance from the experts.  Also, before beginning
on such an exercise, perhaps one should consider the suggestions in Neil
Van Dyke's recent message.  I'll reply to that separately.


N. Raghavendra <>,
Harish-Chandra Research Institute,

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