SGML: Extensible Markup Language (XML) Description

Extensible Markup Language (XML) Description

Subject: Extensible Markup Language (XML)
Date: 7 Apr 1997 05:53:35 GMT
From: (Jon Bosak)
Newsgroup: comp.text.sgml
--------------------------------------------------------------------- XML is a new language for advanced Web applications proposed by a working group of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). A revised working draft of the XML syntax specification is now available at This draft replaces the previous one dated November 14, 1996. PostScript and RTF versions of the new draft are available at: BACKGROUND Extensible Markup Language (XML) is a standardized text format specially designed for transmitting structured data to Web applications. The new language addresses the needs of Web publishers who encounter limitations in the ability of HTML to express structured data. XML differs from HTML in three basic ways: 1. Information providers can define new tag and attribute names at will. 2. Document structures can be nested to any level of complexity. 3. Any XML document can contain an optional description of its grammar for use by applications that need to perform structural validation. XML has been designed for maximum expressive power, maximum ease of implementation, and maximum teachability. The XML character set is Unicode. XML is not backward-compatible with existing HTML documents, but documents conforming to the W3C HTML 3.2 specification can easily be converted to XML, as can documents conforming to ISO 8879 (SGML) and documents generated from databases. XML is not designed to be a replacement for HTML. It is designed to complement HTML by enabling a different kind of data to be exchanged over the Web. The current draft only addresses syntax, and consequently XML alone can at present only be used for interprocess communication and for the delivery of documents to specialized applications (or plug-ins) that have been configured to interpret a particular XML grammar. The first draft of a companion specification for hypertext linking between XML documents is scheduled for release April 9 at the Sixth World Wide Web Conference. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Jon Bosak, Online Information Technology Architect, Sun Microsystems 2550 Garcia Ave., MPK17-101, Mountain View, California 94043 Davenport Group::SGML Open::NCITS V1::ISO/IEC JTC1/SC18/WG8::W3C XML ----------------------------------------------------------------------