Multiple visions of information
Dealing with document, programming, database
W3C XML Schema had to deal with people using XML for documents, for programming interchange, and for databases. The three communities have rather different visions.
Document people need to support mixed content, fairly complex and seemingly random structures (natural language is like that), and rarely want to deal with the extra level of complication most programmers and database developers treat as natural.
Programmers from strongly-typed environments tend to see the world in terms of those types. It's not just numbers - it's ints, floats, and decimals. XML Schema offers them a chance to simplify the code they use to put information from documents into objects.
Database people are typically most concerned that XML Schema types map easily to the types they use for storage internally, to minimize conversion costs. This group also tends to push for unordered content, as recordsets are typically treated that way.
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