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Last modified: April 29, 2010
XML Daily Newslink. Thursday, 29 April 2010

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

This issue of XML Daily Newslink is sponsored by:
Oracle Corporation

W3C Publishes Working Draft for CSS Template Layout Module
Bert Bos and César Acebal (eds), W3C Technical Report

Members of the W3C Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) Working Group have published a Working Draft for the specification CSS Template Layout Module, updating a previous draft issued on 2009-04-02. This specification is part of of the CSS level 3 architecture and contains features to describe layouts at a high level, meant for tasks such as the positioning and alignment of "widgets" in a graphical user interface or the layout grid for a page or a window, in particular when the desired visual order is different from the order of the elements in the source document.

CSS is a simple, declarative language for creating style sheets that specify the rendering of HTML and other structured documents. This specification is part of level 3 of CSS ('CSS3') and contains features to describe layouts at a high level, meant for tasks such as the positioning and alignment of widgets in a graphical user interface or the layout grid for a page or a window, in particular when the desired visual order is different from the order of the elements in the source document. Other CSS3 modules contain properties to specify fonts, colors, text alignment, list numbering, tables, etc. The features in this module are described together for easier reading, but are usually not implemented as a group. CSS3 modules often depend on other modules or contain features for several media types. Implementers should look at the various profiles of CSS, which list consistent sets of features for each type of media.

Overview: "The styling of a Web page, a form or a graphical user interface can roughly be divided in two parts: (1) defining the overall grid of the page or window and (2) specifying the fonts, indents, colors, etc., of the text and other objects. The two are not completely separate, of course, because indenting or coloring a text influences the perceived grid as well. Nevertheless, when one separates the parts of a style that should change when the window gets bigger from the parts that stay the same, one often finds that the grid changes (room for a sidebar, extra navigation bar, big margins, larger images..), while fonts, colors, indents, numbering styles, and many other things don't have to change, until the size of the window becomes extreme.

The properties in this specification work by associating a layout policy with an element. Rather than letting an element lay out its descendants in their normal order as inline text or as blocks of text (the policies available in CSS level 1), the policy defined in this module, called template-based positioning, gives an element an invisible grid for aligning descendant elements. Because layouts on the Web have to adapt to different window and paper sizes, the rows and columns of the grid can be made fixed or flexible in size. The typical use cases for these properties include: (1) Complex Web pages, with multiple navigation bars in fixed positions, areas for advertisements, etc. (2) Complex forms, where the alignment of labels and form fields may be easier with the properties of this module than with the properties for tables and margins. (3) GUIs, where buttons, toolbars, labels, icons, etc., are aligned in complex ways and have to stay aligned (and not wrap, for example) when the window is resized. (4) Paged displays (e.g., printed media) where each page is divided in fixed areas for different kinds of content..."

See also: the W3C Style Activity

Day Software ECM Platform CRX 2.1 With New Support for CMIS and JSR-283
Staff, Day Software Holding AG Announcement

Day Software Holding AG, an enterprise software provider of Web 2.0 content management and content infrastructure software, has announced the release of CRX 2.1, Day's open, standards-based Enterprise Content Management (ECM) platform. Day's new CRX 2.1 release promotes rapid development, deployment and scalable hosting of composite content applications in either a public or private Cloud.

Based on an open source core comprised of the Apache Jackrabbit, Felix and Sling projects, CRX 2.1 provides a core Java Content Repository (JCR) with OSGI-based application integration and RESTful web application development. With a modern, open, standards-based architecture, CRX 2.1 enables IT to virtualize disparate content repositories and application services and consolidate development and hosting of mission-critical Web applications on a single unified platform for increased productivity and compliance. Purpose-built for Cloud-based deployments, CRX 2.1 also enables IT to leverage Cloud service providers like an Amazon Web Services (AWS) to dramatically reduce costs and accelerate new initiatives...

CRX 2.1 adds support for both the JSR-283 and CMIS standards. JSR-283 support follows the December ratification of this successor standard to JSR-170, capping a multi-year effort led by CTO David Nuescheler in the Java Community Process (JCP) and Apache Jackrabbit project. Along with support for JCR 2.0, CRX 2.1 also adds support for the upcoming CMIS standard, which is scheduled for final voting and ratification 30-April-2010. CRX's support for CMIS follows nearly one year after Day's announcement of the Apache Chemistry project to provide a common, vendor-neutral reference implementation of the CMIS standard to promote development and adoption of the new standard. With major vendors like SAP and OpenText part of the Apache Chemistry project, CRX 2.1 provides standardized support for CMIS in addition to support for JCR.

CRX 2.1 features also include: (1) Virtualization and IT Consolidation: Day extends CRX's virtual repository to extend a JSR-283 and CMIS interface to leading enterprise content management repositories, including Microsoft SharePoint. (2) Rapid Composite Content Application Development: CRX 2.1 introduces new tools for developer productivity. For web developers, CRX 2.1 introduces a new browser-based development environment, CRXDE Lite, that offers code-editing, packaging and deployment support for composite content applications, along with integration with leading source code management (SCM) systems... (3) On-Demand Scalability with the Cloud: CRX 2.1 adds new support for elastic storage capability with native support for Amazon Web Services (AWS) S3. Leveraging S3, enterprise customers can scale their Amazon-hosted content repositories on-demand. (4) Cloud-hosted PackageShare Service: In addition to its native Cloud support, Day also introduces with CRX 2.1 its first Cloud-hosted service, PackageShare. PackageShare is Day's online service for enabling CRX developers worldwide to package and share composite content applications, providing a global catalog of pre-built solutions and components..."

See also: CMIS references

Review: Key Management Interoperability Protocol Specification Version
Staff, OASIS Announcement

On April 29, 2010, OASIS announced a 15-day public review for the four Key Management Interoperability Protocol Version 1.0 specifications, extending through May 14, 2010. The KMIP specifications have been produced by members of the OASIS Key Management Interoperability Protocol Technical Committee, chartered to "develop specification(s) for the interoperability of key management services with key management clients. The specifications will address anticipated customer requirements for key lifecycle management (generation, refresh, distribution, tracking of use, life-cycle policies including states, archive, and destruction), key sharing, and long-term availability of cryptographic objects of all types (public/private keys and certificates, symmetric keys, and other forms of "shared secrets") and related areas.

The Key Management Interoperability Protocol Specification Version 1.0 (Committee Draft 10 / Public Review 02, 18-March-2010) is intended "as a specification of the protocol used for the communication between clients and servers to perform certain management operations on objects stored and maintained by a key management system. These objects are referred to as Managed Objects in this specification. They include symmetric and asymmetric cryptographic keys, digital certificates, and templates used to simplify the creation of objects and control their use. Managed Objects are managed with operations that include the ability to generate cryptographic keys, register objects with the key management system, obtain objects from the system, destroy objects from the system, and search for objects maintained by the system. Managed Objects also have associated attributes, which are named values stored by the key management system and are obtained from the system via operations. Certain attributes are added, modified, or deleted by operations..."

The protocol specified in this document includes several certificate- related functions for which there are a number of existing protocols -- namely Validate (e.g., SCVP or XKMS), Certify (e.g. CMP, CMC, SCEP) and Re-certify (e.g. CMP, CMC, SCEP). The protocol does not attempt to define a comprehensive certificate management protocol, such as would be needed for a certification authority. However, it does include functions that are needed to allow a key server to provide a proxy for certificate management functions...

The Key Management Interoperability Protocol Usage Guide Version 1.0 (Committee Draft 09 / Public Review 02, 18-March-2010) is intended to complement the Key Management Interoperability Protocol Specification by providing guidance on how to implement KMIP most effectively to ensure interoperability. It provides guidance in: (1) clarification of assumptions and requirements that drive or influence the design of KMIP and the implementation of KMIP-compliant key management; (2) specific recommendations for implementation of particular KMIP functionality; (3) clarification of mandatory and optional capabilities for conformant implementations; (4) functionality considered for inclusion in KMIP V1.0, but deferred to subsequent versions of the standard... Key Management Interoperability Protocol Use Cases Version 1.0 supplies use-cases that define a number of client-to-server request-response pairs for a number of operations. For each request-response message pair the operation is stated, along with the relevant parameters needed for the request or response message. This is followed by two different illustrations of the messages: first, a human-readable construction which shows the fields tags, types and values, followed by the TTLV-encoding of the message. These are included to facilitate the implementation of the message creation and parsing functionality.... Key Management Interoperability Protocol Profiles Version 1.0 intends to meet the OASIS requirement on conformance clauses for a KMIP Server through profiles that define the use of KMIP objects, attributes, operations, message elements and authentication methods within specific contexts of KMIP server and client interaction. These profiles define a set of normative constraints for employing KMIP within a particular environment or context of use..."

See also: the OASIS Key Management Interoperability Protocol (KMIP) TC

Call for Review: XBRL Global Ledger Framework — Japanese Labels
Staff, XBRL International Announcement

The XBRL GL Working Group has issued a Proposed Recommendation for the GL Framework and Japanese Labels, together with a Call for Review of the specification. "This taxonomy (a modular set) is intended to provide a standardized format for representing the data fields found in accounting and operation systems and transactional reports that will allow organizations to tag journal entries, accounting master files, and historical status reports in XBRL. The modular set consists of the COR (Core), the BUS (Advanced Business Concepts), MUC (MultiCurrency), USK (concepts for the US, UK, etc), and TAF (tax audit file) modules.

XBRL taxonomies are the reporting-area specific hierarchical dictionaries used by the XBRL community. They define the specific tags that are used for individual items of data (such as "net profit"), their attributes and their interrelationships. Different taxonomies will be required for different business reporting purposes. Some national jurisdictions may need their own reporting taxonomies to reflect local accounting and other reporting regulations. Many different organisations, including regulators, specific industries or even companies, may require taxonomies or taxonomy extensions to cover their own specific business reporting needs. A special taxonomy, Global Ledger (GL) taxonomy, was developed and recommended by XII itself has also been designed to support collation of detailed, drill-down data focusing on internal reporting within organisations...

MUC, the update to Multicurrency 1.1, adds data fields found in accounting and operation systems that will allow organizations to track much more detail as part of every entry... USK, an update to Advanced US/UK Accounting 1.1, provides data fields found in accounting and operation systems that will allow organizations to tag journal entries, accounting master files, and historical status reports with additional information necessary for more sophisticated accounting needs common to Saxonic (US, UK, Australia, Canada, and other jurisdictions) in XBRL. TAF adds data fields, needed for tax, tax audit. The addition of these fields enables XBRL GL to be used by the international tax agencies and was developed with the input of groups such ss the OECD SAF-T group and the OASIS tax XML group...

XBRL is a language for the electronic communication of business and financial data which is revolutionising business reporting around the world. It provides major benefits in the preparation, analysis and communication of business information. It offers cost savings, greater efficiency and improved accuracy and reliability to all those involved in supplying or using financial data. XBRL stands for Extensible Business Reporting Language. It is one of a family of XML languages which is becoming a standard means of communicating information between businesses and on the internet. XBRL is being developed by an international non-profit consortium of approximately 450 major companies, organisations and government agencies..."

See also: the XBRL Global Ledger Taxonomy Files

W3C Cheat Sheet for Web Developers: Help With CSS, HTML, SVG and XPath
Dominique Hazaël-Massieux, W3C Blog

W3C has announced a new release of the W3C open source Cheat Sheet Tool which provides quick access to useful information from a variety of Web specifications. It is a compact, mobile-friendly Web application that allows one to look up keywords in various W3C specifications, as well as to access various guidelines and best practices at the tip of the finger.

The Cheat Sheet tool supports CSS, HTML, SVG, and XPath, completed by summaries of guidelines developed at W3C, in particular the WCAG2 accessibility guidelines, the Mobile Web Best Practices, and a number of internationalization tips. Its main feature is a lookup search box, where one can start typing a keyword and get a list of matching properties/elements/attributes/functions in the above-mentioned specifications, and further details on those when selecting the one of interest.

The data used by the Cheat Sheet is first extracted from various sources into an custom XML format (that comes with a RelaxNG schema), and then turned into various pieces of JavaScript code that js/start.js relies on. This double-step process facilitates maintenance of the data — the source of the data being in HTML, turning them directly into JSON makes it painful to update the underlying schema of the data; also, while we want to be as concise as possible in JavaScript, we can afford to be verbose in the XML data, which helps when debbuging... Both the extraction and the transformation into JavaScript are done with XSLT, through a series of transformation stylesheets... The generated XML files follow the rules defined in the RelaxNG schema. Each for the extraction stylesheets relies on a variety of sources to get the data, most of the time the specifications themselves; the HTML extraction also refers to other data for linking the accessibility, internationalization and mobile techniques... The cheat sheet uses JQuery for simplified/cross-browsers DOM and AJAX manipulations, as well as for several UI functionalities...

New and improved features in the most recent 2010-04 Cheat Sheet release: (1) a new layout with improved user interactions, thanks to Sorin Stefan; (2) the possibility to navigate from one keyword to another; for instance, in the details of the HTML head element, it is now possible to follow a link to see the details of each of the allowed children of that element, such as title; (3) integration of more accessibility, internationalization and mobile-friendliness techniques as part of the keywords views; (4) an OpenSearch plug-in that allows to use the cheat sheet as part of the browser search bar; (5) search results and individual views are now bookmarkable; (6) plenty of bug fixes, both in code and data, with additional user documentation..."

See also: the online Cheat Sheet tool

Data Mining With WEKA: Introduction and Regression
Michael Abernethy, IBM developerWorks

"Data mining is the talk of the tech industry, as companies are now generating millions of data points about their users and looking for a way to turn that information into increased revenue. Data mining is a collective term for dozens of techniques to glean information from data and turn it into something meaningful.

This article strives to answer the question 'What is Data Mining?' by giving you a background on the subject and introducing the goals of the field. Data mining strives to turn a lot of misinformation (in the form of scattered data) into useful information by creating models and rules. Your goal is to use the models and rules to predict future behavior, to improve your business, or to just explain things you might not otherwise be able to. These models may confirm what you've already thought, or even better, may find new things in your data you never knew existed. As a funny example, there is an urban data-mining legend (not sure how many of these exist) that, in the United States, Walmart moves beer to the end of the diaper aisles on weekends because its data mining showed that men typically buy diapers on weekends, and many men also like beer on weekends.

The article also introduces you to the free and open source software program WEKA. WEKA is the product of the University of Waikato (New Zealand) and was first implemented in its modern form in 1997. It uses the GNU General Public License (GPL). The software is written in the Java language and contains a GUI for interacting with data files and producing visual results. It also has a general API, so you can embed WEKA, like any other library, in your own applications to such things as automated server-side data-mining tasks. There are certainly complex commercial software products built for data mining, but, for the average person looking to start in data mining, there's a useful solution available that's open source....

Finally, this article discusses the first data-mining model, the regression model (specifically, the linear regression multi-variable model), and shows how to use it in WEKA. This regression model is easy to use and can be used for myriad data sets. You may find it the most useful model I discuss in this series. However, data mining is much more than simply regression, and you'll find some other models are better solutions with different data sets and different output goals..."

See also: Weka 3

Microsoft Tips the Scale in Favor of HTML 5 and H.264
Abel Avram, InfoQueue

"Dean Hachamovitch, General Manager for Internet Explorer at Microsoft, has announced ['HTML5 Video'] that IE9 will use only the H.264 standard to play HTML 5 video. Microsoft seems to have become very committed to HTML 5, while Flash loses even more ground. The announcement came the same day Steve Jobs detailed why Apple does not accept Flash on iPhone and iPad. Microsoft seems to finally take HTML 5 very seriously. Hachamovitch stated: 'The future of the web is HTML5' in the beginning of his blog post. And he added: 'HTML5 will be very important in advancing rich, interactive web applications and site design.' Many wondered what is Microsoft going to do about HTML 5 and, if they start integrating it, what video standard is it going to use? Microsoft has already started implementing some of the HTML 5 features...

Microsoft had to choose between the proprietary video standard H.264, a.k.a. Advanced Video Coding (AVC), and the free Ogg Theora codec. Firefox and Opera are using the later while Chrome implements both. Microsoft has announced IE9 will use only H.264. Hachamovitch also mentioned that developers writing applications for Windows won't have to pay licenses for using the H.264 codec, not even when accessing hardware accelerated features because the license fee is already included in Windows...

Coming back to HTML 5, Firefox and Opera are the only major browser vendors which are still committed to Ogg Theora which is known as providing less quality compared to H.264. They blame the license fees required to use the proprietary standard. The standard is licensed by MPEG LA, a packager of patent pools currently managing the rights for technologies like MPEG-2, MPEG-4, ATSC, or IEEE 1394. Apple, Microsoft, and Google are among the licensees, but Apple and Microsoft are also licensers...

The H.264 license policy is evaluated every 5 years... Different royalties apply for creating codecs based on H.264 that could be included or not in an operating system, consuming video on a subscription or title-by-title basis, or for Internet broadcasts of free TV shows... For example, adding a H.264 codec to an operating system involves a fee of $5 Million/year during 2009-2010... H.264 is used across a large variety of devices including 'set-top boxes, media player and other personal computer software, mobile devices including telephones and mobile television receivers, Blu-ray Disc players and recorders, Blu-ray video optical discs, game machines, personal media player devices, still and video cameras, subscription and pay-per view or title video services, free broadcast television services and other products'..."

See also: CNET 'Patent Challenge Looming for Open-Source Codecs'

European Open Media Web (OMWeb): Standards to Level the Playing Field
Staff, OMWeb Project Announcement

"The popularity of Internet-based access to networked media such as television content, user-generated videos or music is growing very rapidly. However, the most popular solutions today are based on proprietary, closed systems. Web technology is currently undergoing a sea-change which makes it a strong contender for becoming an open, royalty-free standards-based platform for networked media that levels the playing field and enables new market participants, including European players.

However, realizing this promise requires bridging a 'convergence gap' between the innovative and rapidly expanding Web community and the traditional actors in the networked media and 3D community. This gap is particularly apparent in Europe, which is strong in traditional media fields, but has yet to realize its full potential in the area of Web-based networked media.

The Open Media Web project aims to build on Europe's strength in multimedia technology and content to enable European research and industry to strengthen its position in Web technology. The aim of OMWeb is to overcome the convergence gap in Europe. This will be achieved by outreach on Web standards that are of particular relevance to the networked media community. Moreover, a series of workshops will provide the opportunity for members of all relevant communities involved to collaborate on ideas and concepts around web-based networked media. The Open Media Web project also includes training events that will enable the European networked media community to become familiar with standards relevant to web-based networked media. The project will also support working groups that enable collaboration between the Web-based and the more traditional networked media communities.

OMWeb has the following objectives: (1) Increase Awareness of W3C's Networked Media Work in Europe. European actors in the networked media value chain (content providers, authoring tool providers, media technology providers, content distributors etc.) need to be informed about the goals and results of W3C's networked media work. (2) Increase Number of Developers Capable of Developing Networked Media Web Content. European content providers need to be capable of creating networked media content that is Web-based rather than based on traditional networked media technologies. (3) Increase European Standards Activities in Web-based Networked Media. Goal: European actors (both technology and content providers) currently do not play the role in rapidly growing field of Web-based networked media that they are playing in traditional media. Royalty-free, web-based networked media standards will help to level the playing field..."

See also: the WWW2010 Linked Open Data Camp


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