Object-oriented serialization (Was Re: Some questions)

Andrew Layman andrewl at microsoft.com
Mon Dec 6 20:10:17 GMT 1999

Thanks.  As a recap: There are, broadly, two approaches to serializing a
graph in XML. 

One is to invent a meta-grammar, a set of canonicalization rules.  That is
what RDF syntax did, and what the attribute-centric and element-centric
canonical format papers do, what SOAP section eight does. I think of this as
"tunnelling the graph through XML."

The other is to allow XML documents to follow any pattern described in a
schema, and augmenting the schema with a set of mapping rules.

There appears to be significant value to each approach. (In particular,
however, I disagree with the sometimes-asserted claim that graphs capture
the semantics of a communication while grammars do not.  Graphs are just
another grammar.  This makes me reluctant to deprecate grammars.)

I agree that formal approaches to mapping would be helpful. I look forward
to reading your papers.

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