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Created: December 20, 2001.
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Reuters' NewsML Toolkit Provides Enhanced Functionality and Conformance Testing.

Postings from Irving Levine (Reuters) and David Megginson announce the final release of the open-source Java-based NewsML Toolkit version 1.1 and public availability of the software. This release reflects a second major phase of development adding functionality of the NewsML toolkit. "NewsML 1.0 is a news-industry packaging and metadata standard for exchanging multi-part news and information in multiple media. The NewsML Toolkit is a Java library for processing packages of news syndicated using the IPTC NewsML standard and for testing conformance. Developed by Dave Compton (Reuters Corporates/Media Group) and David Megginson, the NewsML toolkit is meant to be used both by subscribers of NewsML and by NewsML developers to simplify the processing of NewsML documents. The latest toolkit functionality allows the user to perform detailed searches of documents, using Java, in order to target specific content, without having to incur the overhead of directly examining every piece of data. In addition, the user can remove unwanted portions of a document and verify the resultant content is still valid, according to the NewsML standard."

NewsML Toolkit. Version 1.1. 12 December 2001. "This distribution contains the final release of version 1.1 of the NewsML Toolkit, a Java-based library for processing NewsML documents. The NewsML Toolkit requires a Java system compatible with JDK 1.2/ Java2 or higher [tested with JRE and HotSpot version 1.3.1 on a Linux 2.4-based system]. The toolkit also requires the following additional, open-source Java libraries: (1) An XML parser supporting SAX2 and DOM level 2 [tested with Xerces-J 1.4.0]. The DOM level 2 interfaces are also required, but they will usually be bundled with the parser. (2) SAXPath [tested with version 1.0beta5]. (3) Jaxen [tested with version 1.0beta6]. If you wish to rebuild the NewsML Toolkit from source, you will also require the following library: (4) Ant [tested with version 1.4]. If you wish to run the unit tests, you will also require the following library: (5) JUnit [tested with version 3.7]. If you wish to run the conformance-testing tools, you will also require the following library: (6) Gnu Regular Expression library [tested with 1.1.3] ... This library is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU Lesser General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2.1 of the License, or (at your option) any later version..."

Distributed with the NewsML Toolkit: "the ALT Demo Version 0.1 distribution contains a simple graphical demonstration program for Dave Compton's Application-Level Toolkit (ALT), built on top of the NewsML Toolkit. This program interactively uses the following ALT features: (1) Generate a summary overview of a NewsML document (MandatoryData); (2) NewsML node deletion; (3) Searching for NewsML nodes by name, text content, and language; (4) Filtering lists of NewsML nodes by name, text content, and language; (5) Querying the element and attribute types allowed in a NewsML document."

Description and demonstration of the NewsML toolkit are supported by a Reuters' web site. See: (1) the MultiLanguages Demo; (2) the News Page Demo; (3) Technical Details and (4) rationale, Why NewsML?

NewsML description from the web site introduction: "NewsML, the emerging industry standard for structuring multi-media news, combined with rich metadata promises to revolutionise the way journalists create stories and users receive information. The eXtensible Markup Language (XML) derivative allows news companies to take advantage of expanding bandwidth that makes multi-media news feasible and the growth of common standards which let computers easily communicate with other computers. Reuters conceived the idea of NewsML in 1998 and donated it to the International Press Telecommunications Council (IPTC) to develop as an open standard. The 50-member news industry standards group agreed a beta version in July and NewsML was ratified as the official standard on the 6th October 2000. NewsML allows journalists to create a new, higher-value type of story, packaging together text, pictures, text, graphics, audio and video as appropriate to tell stories more vividly and effectively. Because the news is structured, devices receiving the news can select the appropriate content. For example, a Web page being viewed over a broadband link might show all media types including video while a current-generation mobile phone might receive only a text headline as an SMS message. NewsML allows a range of metadata to be attached to a multi-media story, including a detailed computer-readable description of what an item is about. Thus, stories can be selected for appropriate media type and content, making it highly relevant to a user and appropriate to a platform."

Related: (1) Version 05 of Syndication::NewsML, "an object-oriented Perl interface to NewsML documents, allowing you to manage (and one day create) NewsML documents without any specialised NewsML or XML knowledge..." See the README document. (2) Brendan Quinn also announced the first public release of Syndication::NITF version 0.2. Syndication::NITF is "an object-oriented Perl interface to NITF documents, allowing you to manage (and one day create) NITF documents without any specialised NITF or XML knowledge. NITF is a standard format for the markup of textual news content (e.g., newspaper and magazine articles), ratified by the International Press Telecommunications Council. This module supports the version 3.0 DTD of NITF..." See CPAN.

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