XML: A outside perspective

THOMAS PASSIN tpassin at idsonline.com
Fri Jan 28 13:40:06 GMT 2000

David Megginson  wrote:

> Nevertheless, there were many good points about the costs and benefits
> of using XML elsewhere in the thread.
> For example, one of the free software projects I contribute to is
> FlightGear (http://www.flightgear.org/), the open source flight
> simulator.  Eventually, they may choose to use XML-based configuration
> and save formats, but even with an XML parser, that's a lot of hassle
> when they can parse line- and field-oriented files within only a few
> lines of code (and they don't have to bundle a parser library either).

On the other hand, if you translate your line-and-field format directly to
xml - and especially if you keep the xml for each record to a separate line
(yes, not fully general xml, I know)- you can hack that format with just a
little code, say a page of python or perl.  (Either with or without regular
expressions). And that code can be general enough to apply to an arbitrary
sample in that format, so you can change the fields in the file format
without changing the processing code. This could be just the thing for a
project's configuration files.

<aside>It's not really heresy, is it ;-) ???</aside>

Tom Passin

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