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Last modified: July 10, 2007
XML Daily Newslink. Tuesday, 10 July 2007

A Cover Pages Publication
Provided by OASIS and Sponsor Members
Edited by Robin Cover

This issue of XML Daily Newslink is sponsored by:
BEA Systems, Inc.

Emotion Markup Language: W3C Incubator Group Report Final Report
Marc Schroeder, Enrico Zovato, Hannes Pirker (et al, eds), W3C Report

W3C announced that the Emotion Incubator Group, which includes representatives from sixteen institutions in eleven countries on three continents, has published its final report. The Report presents requirements for information that needs to be represented in a general-purpose Emotion Markup Language in order to be usable in a wide range of use cases. Specifically, the report describes the range of use cases in which an emotion markup language would be needed, and presents a rich structured collection of requirements arising from those use cases. It describes how the requirements coincide with scientific models of emotion, and begins to assess syntactic issues in view of a future specification, by evaluating existing markup languages in the light of the collected requirements. The report identifies various areas which require further investigation and debate. The intention is that it forms a major input into a new Incubator Group which would develop a draft specification as a proposal towards a future activity in the W3C Recommendation Track.

See also: the W3C Emotion Incubator Group

WSO2 Mashup Server Version 0.1 Released
Jonathan Marsh, Blog

Today we released our first alpha version of the WSO2 Mashup Server. The capabilities are quite limited at present but the fundamentals are in place to deliver an innovative product. The primary issue we're trying to solve is that of Web Service composition. There are a number of specifications such as BPEL and WS-Choreography which target this space, but they are fairly heavyweight and difficult while still being limited in their capabilities. Rather than these more formal orchestration methods, we've approached the problems of service composition from another direction, inspired by the Web 2.0 phenomenon of mashups. Mashups are light and quick compositions of information from various sources - usually a mix of individual information with global information—my pictures appearing on a map is the archetype of these kinds of mashups. As Web 2.0 technologies erode the boundaries of the enterprise, we feel that mashups and service compositions will converge into the same space. So what we've done is fairly simple, yet also pretty unique: (1) Provide a platform for easy invocation of Web Services from within a JavaScript + E4X environment. This enables you to grab data in XML format from a variety of Web Services and manipulate it fluidly. (2) Expose JavaScript functions as Web Service operations, complete with WSDL 2.0 or WSDL 1.1 and XML Schema descriptions, and automatically generate bindings for SOAP 1.2, SOAP 1.1, and REST access. There you have the basic service composition capability: acquire data, manipulate it, and expose it again as a new Web Service. The ability to recursively expose mashups and allow them in turn to be mashed up is But wait there's more!....

See also: the WSO2 Mashup Server

Icesoft Improves AJAX Environment for Web 2.0 Applications
Paul Krill, InfoWorld

Icesoft Technologies has announced availability of Icefaces 1.6.0, an upgrade to the company's AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) development environment positioned for building of Web 2.0 applications. Featured in the open-source product is integration with the JBoss Seam 1.2 development framework for Java. Icesoft describes Seam as a framework for Web 2.0 application development with Web 2.0 characterized as enabling collaboration. Icefaces is based on JSF (JavaServer Faces) but features AJAX. Developers use JSF components and get interactivity based on AJAX. In addition to supporting AJAX, Seam leverages JSF, Enterprise JavaBeans, Java Portlets and business process management. With Seam, developers can assemble Web applications with annotated Plain Old Java Objects, componentized UI widgets, and little XML. Icefaces 1.6.0 also features source code examples, such as the Icefaces + Seam Component Showcase that illustrates an Icefaces component suite functioning within a Seam-based application. Compliance with the OpenAjax Hub in Icefaces provides interoperability between JavaScript libraries. An AJAX bridge in version 1.6.0 prevents security violations based on cross-site request forgery exploits. Other improvements include support for the Glassfish, SAP NetWeaver 2007, and Webtide Jetty application servers as well as integration with Spring Web Flow technology and support for Apache MyFaces Tomahawk components.

See also: the Icesoft Technologies announcement

XML Merging Made Easy: Manipulate XML Files Using XPath Declarations
Laurent Bovet, JavaWorld Magazine

"As a Java developer you use XML every day in your build scripts, deployment descriptors, configuration files, object-relational mapping files and more. Creating all these XML files can be tedious, but it's not especially challenging. Manipulating or merging the data contained in such disparate files, however, can be difficult and time-consuming. You might prefer to use several files split into different modules, but find yourself limited to one large file because that is the only format the XML's intended consumer can understand. In this article, I present an open source tool I created to resolve many of the common problems associated with merging and manipulating data from different XML documents. EL4J XmlMerge is a Java library under the LGPL license that makes it easier to merge elements from different XML sources. While XmlMerge is part of the EL4J framework, you can use it independently of EL4J. All you need to run the XmlMerge utility from your command line is JDK 1.5 or greater. You will learn how to use XmlMerge for a variety of common XML merging scenarios, including merging two XML files, merging XML file data from different sources to create a Spring Resource bean at runtime and combining XmlMerge and Ant to create an automated deployment descriptor at build time. I'll also show you how to use XPath declarations and built-in actions and matchers to specify the treatment of specific elements during an XML merge. I'll conclude with a look at XmlMerge's simple merging algorithm and suggest ways it could be extended for more specialized XML merging operations.

See also: the EL4J web site

Semantic Annotations for WSDL and XML Schema
Joel Farrell and Holger Lausen (eds), W3C Technical Report

W3C announced that the specification for "Semantic Annotations for WSDL and XML Schema" has been advanced to Proposed Recommendation. Semantic Annotations for WSDL and XML Schema (SAWSDL) "defines how to add semantic annotations to various parts of a WSDL document such as input and output message structures, interfaces and operations. The extension attributes defined in this specification fit within the WSDL 2.0, WSDL 1.1, and XML Schema extensibility frameworks. For example, this specification defines a way to annotate WSDL interfaces and operations with categorization information that can be used to publish a Web service in a registry. The annotations on schema types can be used during Web service discovery and composition. In addition, SAWSDL defines an annotation mechanism for specifying the data mapping of XML Schema types to and from an ontology; such mappings could be used during invocation, particularly when mediation is required. To accomplish semantic annotation, SAWSDL defines extension attributes that can be applied both to WSDL elements and to XML Schema elements. The semantic annotations reference a concept in an ontology or a mapping document. The annotation mechanism is independent of the ontology expression language and this specification requires and enforces no particular ontology language. It is also independent of mapping languages and does not restrict the possible choices of such languages." Comments on the PR are welcome through 17-August-2007.

See also: the news item

Ballmer Urges Partners to Embrace SAAS
July 10, 2007

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to attendees at the annual Worldwide Partner Conference: "Microsoft and its partners must change the way they have traditionally done business to accommodate software as a service." Ballmer said that there is a new set of innovations that affects the fundamental model of computation and the user interface, and that this affects everyone, from customers to partners and developers. The future of software and services will bring together the best of the desktop, the enterprise, the Web and devices. The desktop will bring a rich user experience, offline access and personal integration, while the enterprise brings management, compliance and security, Web click-to-run, search, and collaboration built-in; and devices bring mobility and new device form factors... Ballmer said he is often asked about the future of user experience and if the world will go to all thin clients and all HTML, but "that is not right, I was going to say it's nonsense. Mobile devices are getting richer, not smaller and thinner. We want all the benefits of rich and enterprise and of our devices," he said, referencing the company's Silverlight platform, which started the software-plus-services transition. Developer services will involve Windows Live Cloud infrastructure services and Silverlight streaming, as well as BizTalk services. Service enablers for Web sites include Windows Server, SQL Server, Visual Studio and AdCenter, while service enablers for click-to-run clients are ActiveX, AJAX, Silverlight, .Net and Win32Softgrid...

Use XForms and Ajax to Create An Autosuggest Form Field
Michael Galpin, IBM developerWorks

This article shows how XForms can be used to complement Ajax. It uses many of the same paradigms as Ajax, but provides several simplifications and optimizations. It's easier to send and receive data from the server using XForms, and you get "smarter" events from it. It can also simplify the JavaScript needed, providing a lot of "boilerplate" functionality that JavaScript must implement normally. In conclusion, it's often beneficial to let XForms be the "A" and the "X" in Ajax. An autosuggest-form field is a prototypical Ajax feature. One of the applications that first popularized it was Google Suggest. In Google Suggest, you start typing a keyword to search on and the application suggests search terms based on popularity. This is nice for users, as they don't have to type all of their search term and it helps prevents data-entry mistakes. This technique is used widely in Web applications now. XForms is a standardized technology, but it is not yet implemented by default in most browsers. This article uses the Mozilla XForms add-on. This is an add-on that can be used with any Mozilla Gecko-based browsers such as Firefox, Seamonkey, and Flock. All of the XForms code used here is standard, so any compliant XForms implementations should be similar, but it's been tested against the Mozilla XForms Add-on version 0.8 installed on Mozilla Firefox 2.0.

See also: XML and Forms

Atomojo Atom Publish Protocol Server 0.4.0 Release Available
Alex Milowski, XML-DEV Posting

"I've just put up a new version (0.4.0) of my atomojo Atom Publishing Protocol (APP) server... this is the first release I think is stable and ready to take a beating from you all! The feeds and xml content are stored in an embedded version of eXist and they are also indexed in several ways external to eXist. The most interesting new features are the metadata and term feeds. Metadata feeds give you context information about related feeds in the hierarchy (e.g. children, ancestors, etc.). Term feeds enumerate feeds and entries by their use of the Atom category element..." From the web site description: "The atomojo project contains both an Atom Publishing Protocol (APP) server and client. While both are intended to be used together, as they implement a standard protocol, they can be used with other APP-enable applications. The client [Atomojo Firefox Extension] is a Firefox plugin that contains an XPCOM component for interacting with the Atom protocol... The Atomojo Server runs on top of a engine and uses a rest-style URI architecture for its feeds. Feed are organized hierarchically just like a file system but they are store in an XML database called eXist. In addition to eXist, there is a metadata index that is stored in an embedded Derby database. This index stores information about what feeds contain what entries as well as information about categorization. Once the server is started, you can get the service introspection document by a GET on the server root... Supporting documents include a development Roadmap for future directions, an Administration Guide for the server, a Users Guide for the server, a specification of the pull synchronization process, and a specification of the push synchronization process..."

See also: the Google code

Java EE 6 Is Back and on Track
Darryl K. Taft, eWEEK

The Java Platform, Enterprise Edition 6 specification is back, and with it will be a lot of flexibility for developers. The new Java EE 6 specification, which was released on July 3, 2007 is known as Java Specification Request (JSR) 316. JSR 316 is aimed at reaching a wider audience of developers. Rod Johnson, CEO of Interface21 Ltd.—the maintainers of the Spring Framework—said, "I believe that this will be the most important revision of the platform since it was released nearly 10 years ago, and that it should be welcomed by users of the technology." Indeed, according to the specification, in the past eight years, the Java EE platform has grown and matured, and is now able to cover a wide range of enterprise and Web application development needs. In addition, the Java EE platform has fostered a vibrant community and marketplace for additional technologies, frameworks and applications that work with the platform, the JSR 316 specification said. Some of these provide facilities that are missing from the platform. Others provide alternatives to platform facilities. Meanwhile, to address the issue of the increasing broadness of the Java EE platform, the backers of JSR 316 have introduced the concept of profiles. These profiles will reference the Java EE platform, as defined by the JCP process and may include a subset of Java EE platform technologies, additional JCP technologies not part of the base Java EE platform, or both. One thing the Java EE 6 specification does not include is the OSGi (Open Services Gateway Initiative). It simply says that work on modules is being considered in JSR 277 the Java Module System, which is targeted for Java Platform, Standard Edition 7 (Java SE 7).

See also: JSR 316


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