The W3C XForms Working Group has released an updated version of the XForms Requirements Working Draft, reflecting changes made at the recent meeting of the XForms Working Group and superseding the working draft of 2000-08-21. The working draft "outlines the requirements for 'XForms', W3C's name for the next generation of Web forms. The WG envisages the design work being conducted in several steps, starting with the development of a core forms module, followed by work on additional modules for specific features. The Modularization of XHTML provides a mechanism for defining modules which can be recombined as appropriate for the capabilities of different platforms. XForms will be an application of XML 1.0 plus Namespaces. It will be possible to define a rich form, including validations, dependencies, and basic calculations without the use of a scripting language. As an application of XML, it will be possible to combine XForms with other XML based languages such as XHTML. XForms provide considerable benefits compared with classic XHTML forms. In particular, the separation of the purpose from the presentation of a form enables a separation of concerns such that differing skills can be applied to the design of a form. These skills may be embodied in a single person or many depending on both the sophistication of the Form being designed as well as the skills of individuals involved in the design process."
This specification describes requirements for the next generation of Web forms. The document has been produced as part of the W3C work on XForms, following the procedures set out for the W3C Process. The authors of this document are members of the W3C XForms working group . This document is for public review, and comments and discussion are welcomed on the public mailing list. To subscribe, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the word subscribe in the subject line (include the word unsubscribe if you want to unsubscribe).
Individuals familiar with HTML 4 Forms will find XForms both more powerful as well as simpler. Specifically, XForms will make it simpler to build forms including the business logic, calculations, and form processing that in many cases prior to XForms has been done with scripting. The two primary roles associated with XForms authoring are the design of the purpose of the form as expressed in an XForms model as well as the design of the user interface and user interaction.
Server-side programmers are also part of the target audience. In the past, deploying forms on a Web site involved complex server-side scripting to accept, validate, and process incoming data. XForms will make this easier by providing a consistent, XML-based format for incoming data, as well as by providing a rich validation framework.
Bibliographic information: XForms Requirements. W3C Working Draft 04-April-2001. Previous version 2000-08-21.. Editors: Edited by Micah Dubinko (Cardiff), Sebastian Schnitzenbaumer, Mozquito Technologies), Malte Wedel Mozquito Technologies), and Dave Raggett (W3C).