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Re: [ddlm-group] Data-name character restrictions - one last time

The only problem with recognizing CIF2 files by the period in tag names is 
that mmCIF and pdbx CIFs also use such data names.  Hopefully those
files would have DDLm dictionaries early on, so that the presumption
of using DDLm dictionaries for all CIFs with name using periods would
be valid.

  Herbert J. Bernstein, Professor of Computer Science
    Dowling College, Kramer Science Center, KSC 121
         Idle Hour Blvd, Oakdale, NY, 11769


On Wed, 9 Dec 2009, Herbert J. Bernstein wrote:

> Personally, I would greatly prefer to allow all data names that do not
> create a major lexer/parser conflict to appear in a data CIF and
> only apply the strong restrictions to data names that appear in CIF2
> dictionaries as defined data names (not as aliases).  -- Herbert
> At 2:40 PM +0000 12/9/09, Brian McMahon wrote:
>>> I have one remaining niggle that I'd like to revisit before we put
>>> this finally to bed. As has been mentioned a couple of times
>>> recently, restricting the data-name character set does invalidate
>>> syntactically many existing CIF 1 files (e.g. _refine_ls_shift/esd_max ).
>>> We have discussed strategies for handling this, and I think these
>>> are workable strategies, but will involve investment and hence expense
>>> in workflow management in CIF archives.
>>> I understand the rationale behind this restriction is to simplify
>>> future processing of data names in areas such as dREL
>>> applications. The question really is whether we're choosing the right
>>> trade-off in making things cleaner at that end of the processing
>>> chain. I would suppose that a dREL or other application could ingest a
>>> data name with dangerous characters, convert it internally into a
>>> "safe" identifier that's used for all processing, and then restore the
>>> original form upon output; but writing that intermediate layer of
>>> processing is of course expensive (especially if there aren't readily
>>> available libraries that will do this transparently).
>>> I suspect that some of the original proposed syntactic changes also
>>> had the effect (whether by design or collaterally) of simplifying i/o,
>>> data structure management, symbol table processing etc., but those may
>>> have suffered in the subsequent revision exercise we've just been
>>> practising. Given the consensus we are now approaching, would the code
>>> builders now be prepared to incur the addition expense of handling
>>> "dangerous" data names?
>>> I really don't want to spark off a long discussion on this - if a
>>> quick round of response shows that there's no appetite to allow
>>> the additional punctuation characters in data names, I'll accept that
>>> gracefully.
>>> ***
>>> One last comment while I have the floor, though it is related in part
>>> to the above question. A concern raised in the editorial office was
>>> that there would be circumstances where users didn't know if they were
>>> dealing with a CIF 1 or 2 ("users" meaning authors, perhaps resorting
>>> to the vi editor - and we're imagining most of them are dealing with
>>> small-molecule/inorganic CIFs). My supposition is that the IUCr
>>> editorial offices would only want to use CIF2 seriously in association
>>> with DDLm dictionaries, and that we would expect the revised core
>>> dictionaries to use the dot component in data names to signal this
>>> further evolution. So even a superficial glimpse of the middle of a
>>> CIF would make it clear whether it was CIF1 or CIF2.
>>> Does that fit in with how others see this progressing?
>>> Cheers
>>> Brian
>>> _______________________________________________
>>> ddlm-group mailing list
>>> ddlm-group@iucr.org
>>> http://scripts.iucr.org/mailman/listinfo/ddlm-group
>> --
> =====================================================
>  Herbert J. Bernstein, Professor of Computer Science
>    Dowling College, Kramer Science Center, KSC 121
>         Idle Hour Blvd, Oakdale, NY, 11769
>                  +1-631-244-3035
>                  yaya@dowling.edu
> =====================================================
> [*** Normal Termination ***]
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