There's some pretty good discussion of the attribute-vs-element issue at
In particular, I like the last paragraph of the "Sperberg-McQueen" comments
which suggests that it really doesn't matter all that much.
Basically, most seem to agree that it depends on how the designer plans to use
the XML. In the case of the inventory catalog XML, sub-elements were used to
hierarchically organize the datasets and attributes were used for just about
everything else (except for free text).
Tom Whittaker wrote:
> Sorry, I had an incompleted thought at the end of my last note:
> > Finally, I don't have much experience in XML, but a few things I've read
> > suggest that using attributes instead of elements to describe data.
> should have ended: "...to describe data is a bad idea."
> > Is this
> > one of those "religous wars" things?
> Tom Whittaker (tomw@xxxxxxxxxxxxx)
> University of Wisconsin-Madison
> Space Science and Engineering Center
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