What is XML?
Stands for eXtensible Markup Language (XML). Similar to HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) that it is primarily used to categorize various data for computers and humans to use more effectively. In basic terms, It allows for customizable tags for marking up information that is otherwise difficult for computers to understand.
- XML stands for eXtensible Markup Language
- It is a markup language much like HTML
- XML was designed to store and transport data
- It was designed to be self-descriptive
- It simplifies data sharing
- Simplifies data transport
- It simplifies platform changes
- Simplifies data availability
Many computer systems contain data in incompatible formats. Exchanging data between incompatible systems (or upgraded systems) is a time-consuming task for web developers. Large amounts of data must be converted, and incompatible data is often lost.
It stores data in plain text format. This provides a software- and hardware-independent way of storing, transporting, and sharing data.
It also makes it easier to expand or upgrade to new operating systems, new applications, or new browsers, without losing data.
How Can XML be Used?
It is used in many aspects of web development.
XML is often used to separate data from presentation.
It Separates Data from Presentation
XML does not carry any information about how to be displayed.
The same XML data can be used in many different presentation scenarios.
Because of this, with XML, there is full separation between data and presentation.
It is Often a Complement to HTML
In many HTML applications, XML is used to store or transport data, while HTML is used to format and display the same data.
It Separates Data from HTML
When displaying data in HTML, you should not have to edit the HTML file when the data changes.
14 January 1999 — Leading the Web to its full potential, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) today released the “Namespaces in XML” specification as a W3C Recommendation. Teaming up with W3C’s Extensible Markup Language (XML) Recommendation, this new specification allows authors to mix two or more XML-based languages in one document without conflict or ambiguity, thus promoting the modular development and reuse of XML languages and applications. A W3C Recommendation indicates that a specification is stable, contributes to Web interoperability and has been reviewed by W3C Membership who are in favor of its adoption by the industry.
The “Namespaces in XML” specification resolves potential name clashes by using the Web addressing infrastructure. Each element name in a document may be prefixed with a unique address, thus precisely qualifying the name. The modularity and simplicity of XML technology combined with namespaces pave the way for future developments, such as the work in progress in W3C’s XML Schema Working Group, and data exchange based on W3C’s Resource Description Framework (RDF) architecture.
The “Namespaces in XML” specification was created and developed by the W3C XML Working Group, which includes key industry players such as Adobe, Arbortext, DataChannel, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Inso, Isogen, Microsoft, NCSA, Netscape, Oracle, SoftQuad, Sun Microsystems, Texcel, Vignette, and Fuji Xerox; as well as experts in structured documents and electronic publishing.
The design of “Namespaces in XML” is the direct result of W3C’s experience with evolving Web technologies. Namespaces allow the Web to scale in a way that promotes interoperability. “We’ve seen what it takes for technology to move forward in practice. This Recommendation is engineering to make the Web capable of evolving – not just good, but capable of becoming ever better,” says Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director. “As the Web gets bigger, new technology must be able to move slowly from invention in a small community to global adoption. And that must be possible without anyone having to recode existing applications to meet the new standard.”
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