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Introduction to XML
Eugenia Fernandez
IUPUI
What is XML?

From the World Wide Web
Consortium (W3C)


The Extensible Markup Language (XML)
is the universal format for structured
documents and data on the web.
It is a tag-based markup language
that both describes data and is used
to create markup languages for
specific contexts.
XML-derived
Markup Languages


Open Financial Exchange (OFX)
XML/EDI


Resource Description Framework



Markup for Electronic Data Interchange
Markup for describing data about data
(metadata) for cataloging and search
purposes
Chemical markup Language (CML)
Wireless Markup Language (WML)
A Document Contains

Data
XML


Structure
Presentation
Style sheets
(CSS, XSL)
Unstructured vs.
Structured Data
Unstructured
diluvio m. Inundación causada por lluvias
copiosas. Lluvia muy copiosa.
Structured
<word>diluvio</word>
<type>m.</type>
<definition>Inundación causada por lluvias
copiosas. Lluvia muy copiosa.</definition>
History of XML



SGML (Standard Generalization Markup
Language) was developed as a way to
express data in electronic texts
XML is simplified subset of SGML,
designed to work across a limitedbandwidth network such as the Internet.
XML is in process of being standardized.
It is currently at the recommendation
stage.
XML vs. HTML
HTML = presentation format
<html>
<b>101 Main St.<br>
Chicago, IL 60661</b>
</html>
<?xml version=”1.0” ?>
<address>
<street>101 Main St.</street>
<city>Chicago</city>
<state>IL</state>
<zip>60661</zip>
</address>
XML = structured content
Why XML?




Readable format
Distribute data to any machine on
any platform
Easily combine multiple sources of
data
Easier way to do data interchange
between applications
Benefits of Using XML







Describes content and structure
Both machine- and human- readable
Separates content from display
Well-formed, follows rules
Can be validated
Open and extensible
One source – multiple formats
One Source –
Multiple Formats


Separating data from presentation
and processing frees the data from
any one use
Data becomes "use neutral"
Conversion
HTML
XML
PDF
XML
Processing XML into HTML
XML
Document
XSL
Processor
XSL
Stylesheet
HTML
Document
Processing XML to XML
XML
Document
XSL
Processor
XSL
Stylesheet
New
XML
Document
How XML Can Be Used




Enable business-to-business
communication
Enable smart agents
Enable smart searches
XML data can be manipulated by the
browser reducing server & network
load
A Few XML Technologies



Extensible Markup Language (XML) 1.0
Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
Extensible Style Language (XSL)






XML Document Transformation (renamed XSLT)
XPath, a pattern matching syntax
XSLFO, a formatting object interpretation, for
printing
XML Pointer Language (XPointer) and XML
Linking Language (XLink)
Document Type Definition (DTD)
XML Schemas (XSD)
Contents of XML Document



Processing
instructions
Comments
Elements





Root Element
Child Element
Empty
Element
Attributes
Text
<?xml version=“1.0“?>
<!-- Student Information -->
<student_list>
<name>John Smith</name>
<full_time/>
<email type=“home”>
[email protected] </email>
</student_list>
XML Data is Hierarchical
<?xml version=“1.0”?>
<!-- Student Information -->
student
name
John Smith
full_time
<student>
<name>John Smith</name>
<full_time/>
<email type=“home”>
[email protected] </email>
</student>
email
type
[email protected]
home
Well-formed Documents






Contain single root element
Match open and close tags
Consistent capitalization
Correctly nested elements
All attributes enclosed in quotes
No repeating attributes in an
element
Validation of XML
Documents



Ensures that document is
grammatically correct
Well formed valid
Validation done via


Document Type Definition (DTD)
XML Schema
References




MSDN DevSeries, Web 105:
Introduction to XML
Microsoft Class Pack: Building XMLBased Web Applications, Module 1:
Overview of XML Documents
XML Seminar at Quilogy, May 9, 2001
Introduction to XML, a Barnes &
Noble University Online Course