Relational Tables and structured document

Lars Marius Garshol larsga at
Tue Mar 24 20:01:16 GMT 1998

* G. David Kuhlman
| But, if you have a large XML file, how do you update fields within
| that file without copying or re-writting the whole file?  That
| sounds very awkward.

* Deke Smith
| You're right, you would have to parse the file to some sort of tree
| structure and edit the nodes of the tree. Then it can be parsed back
| to XML.

A DOM server might solve that problem. My dream is to have a DOM
implementation that's CORBA-aware and has some sort of locking
mechanism for concurrent access.[1] The ideal implementation would
have some language for expressing operations on the DOM tree (or at
least for locating the node where you want to start editing (XLL?)) so
that repetitive operations could be simplified.

It would also be nice to have some sort of caching in that documents
could be kept in one of three forms: as objects in memory, as
serialized objects in some form of permanent storage (disk, database,
whatever) or as an XML document.

Whether this would actually have any advantages over an ODBMS is not
clear to me, but I intend to find out. I certainly see a lot of
possible advantages, but also some pitfalls.

[1] The CORBA hype claims that the CORBA services can provide
    security, transactions and locking transparently. If it's true it
    would certainly be a major help.

    CORBA might not be a viable alternative for all kinds of web
    applications yet (although Netscape 4 (maybe also 3) comes with an
    ORB), so an HTTP2CORBA gateway might have to be installed as well.

"These are, as I began, cumbersome ways / to kill a man. Simpler, direct, 
and much more neat / is to see that he is living somewhere in the middle /
of the twentieth century, and leave him there."     -- Edwin Brock

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