Spitting out XML (was RE: Will XML eat the web?)

David Megginson david at megginson.com
Fri Jan 29 15:40:06 GMT 1999

Matthew Sergeant (EML) writes:

 > 	The point is - XML fits our problem domain perfectly
 > well. It's just not fast when parsing directly. Ultimately we may
 > have to turn the architecture on it's head - store in a database
 > (relational or OO) and transmit XML to the client. If they want to
 > edit the XML by hand, transmit some to them, and parse the results
 > back into the database. This will be a disappointment to me, but
 > not the end of the world.

Why would you be disappointed if you were following best practice?
This is *exactly* the right way to use XML, at least in the data
world.  XML is designed to be an exchange format that allows different
systems to talk to each other; it does not dictate how those systems
should deal with the information internally.

Or, in DB speak, an XML document will usually represent a view of a
database rather than the database itself (unless you're doing a dump
and restore or a long-term archival backup).

Sometimes XML can represent the database itself if the database is
very small (i.e. it would traditionally be stored as a flat ASCII file
and batch-processed with Perl rather being stored in an RDBM): that's
not really what sales wonks would call an enterprise-strength
solution, but I (for example) use it for my own record-keeping.

All the best,


David Megginson                 david at megginson.com

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