This may be a really silly question, or a silly way of approaching the  
topic, but as long as we're thinking things over I would like to get  
the thoughts of the group  on this:

To what extent does the TEI's successful functioning as an interchange  
language depend on its vocabulary and the way it associates semantics  
with specific terms, and to what extent does it depend on the specific  
structures (i.e. where elements can go and what they can contain) that  
are specified in the TEI schema?

In using the phrase "successful functioning" I don't mean to set aside  
the debate about whether it *does* function successfully as an  
interchange language--I'm really curious as to whether vocabulary or  
grammar is really the  key to whatever success we do attribute to, or  
seek from, the TEI.

It seems to me that the answer to this question might affect how we  
approach the problem of consistency and constraint. But I may be wrong  
about this and I'd be glad to know more about it than I do.

best, Julia