XML and Web Services In The News - 07 July 2006

Provided by OASIS | Edited by Robin Cover

This issue of XML Daily Newslink is sponsored by Innodata Isogen


 IESG Approves Publication of 'Matching of Language Tags'
 Don't Break the Link: Avoid Four Costly Pitfalls in Linking and Reuse
 Microsoft Office to Support ODF: The Q&A
 PESC Announces Approval of XML High School Transcript Standard
 W3C Releases Semantic Annotations for WSDL Working Draft
 OMG Adopts Systems Modeling Language
 Genuitec MyEclipse 5.0 Links NetBeans, Eclipse

IESG Approves Publication of 'Matching of Language Tags'
Addison Phillips and Mark Davis (eds), Approved for IETF RFC
Martin Duerst (Aoyama Gakuin University), co-chair of IETF's Language Tag Registry Update (LTRU) Working Group, announced that the IESG has approved version 15 of the "Matching of Language Tags" Internet Draft for publication. This document, together with version 14 of the companion "Tags for Identifying Languages" (now in RFC Ed Queue) will be published as an RFC and will replace RFC 3066 ("Tags for the Identification of Languages"), which replaced RFC 1766. Currently, RFC 3066 or its successor is referenced normatively by XML 1.1 and other markup standards for constructing language identification tags. "Knowledge about the particular language used by some piece of information content might be useful or even required by some types of processing; for example spell-checking, computer-synthesized speech, Braille transcription, or high-quality print renderings. One means of indicating the language used is by labeling the information content with an identifier or 'tag'. The IETF document 'Tags for Identifying Languages' describes the structure, content, construction, and semantics of language tags for use in cases where it is desirable to indicate the language used in an information object. It also describes how to register values for use in language tags and the creation of user defined extensions for private interchange. The document 'Matching of Language Tags: defines a syntax (called a language range) for specifying items in the user's list of language preferences (called a language priority list), as well as several schemes for selecting or filtering sets of language tags by comparing the language tags to the user's preferences. Applications, protocols, or specifications will have varying needs and requirements that affect the choice of a suitable matching scheme. It describes: how to indicate a user's preferences using language ranges; three schemes for matching these ranges to a set of language tags; and the various practical considerations that apply to implementing and using these schemes."
See also: Language Identifiers

Don't Break the Link: Avoid Four Costly Pitfalls in Linking and Reuse
Brandon Jockman, Innodata Isogen White Paper
Link management plays a vital role in establishing the overall quality of an XML-based system. Too often, organizations underestimate the significance of this key requirement -- causing systems to fall short in providing the full suite of link management services required by modern enterprises. The global transition of documents into XML prompts project requirements related to authoring, singlesource/ multiple-output publication, content management and workflow. Linking traditionally refers to a simple point-to-point link, such as a hyperlink from one Web page to another or a navigable link between two pages in a PDF document. The XML Linking Language (XLink) W3C specification1 provides an XML-based linking syntax for traditional links. However, the combination of its cumbersome authoring syntax and general lack of tool support prevents it from being the most commonly used linking syntax. Other common approaches to XML linking include ID/IDREF, W3C Schema's key/keyref, or custom links. They have limitations as well. Some common XML flavors, such as XHTML and DocBook define their own link elements. To support these custom linking syntaxes, some tools provide configurable link definition systems where custom link elements can be defined along with the type of link. However, these non-standard links may not be portable between tools. Unless adequate analysis and preparation takes place, simple linking can be anything but simple in a complex system. Linking can also include other types of referencing. This type of linking is often called use-by-reference or reuse. In a reuse link, the point-to-point link relationship has a modifier specifying that content from the target location should be pulled into the source location at a given point in time. The most complete XML-based reuse mechanism is defined by the XML Inclusions (XInclude) W3C specification.
See also: TBL's 1998 Cool URIs Don't Change

Microsoft Office to Support ODF: The Q&A
Stephen O'Grady, Blog
I've got some early commentary on the news that Microsoft has announced support for the Open Document Format. This analysis was made possible by the folks from Microsoft who were good enough to brief us on this news last week. With the advance notice, I've had both the opportunity to ask some questions as well as think on the answers I received. The news is this: Microsoft is announcing support, via a non-bundled, third party application, for the ISO standard Open Document Format (ODF). To make things more interesting, the third party application is an open source project, governed by the BSD license and hosted externally at SourceForge. It's Microsoft's contention that they are still not seeing any notable traction or interest for ODF from their enterprise clients, but events within the public sector (e.g. in Belgium, Denmark, France, etc) have led to ODF being an RFP type requirement for many governmental bodies. The achievement of an ISO standard applies here as well, because Microsoft believes that governments that have even a single citizen exchanging documents in ODF would be obligated to serve that citizen given the standardization. ODF support, therefore, became important for one of their larger customer bases, making this announcement a very logical decision. A fait accompli, almost. Having reached the conclusion that ODF is not going away, Microsoft likely felt obliged to support it to guarantee access to the widest possible market.
See also: announcement and references

PESC Announces Approval of XML High School Transcript Standard
Postsecondary Electronic Standards Council, Announcement
The Board of Directors and Steering Committee of the Postsecondary Electronic Standards Council (PESC) approved the release of the XML High School Transcript Standard as a PESC Member-Approved National Education Community Standard. This effort marks a significant milestone and achievement for the education community, the Standardization of Postsecondary Education Electronic Data Exchange (SPEEDE) Committee of the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRA), and for PESC. The High School Transcript is a specification designed for use by secondary and postsecondary educational institutions, state agencies, and software vendors to communicate current and historical student academic records. The High School Transcript contains personal history and identifying information about the student, the current academic status, dates of attendance, courses completed with grades earned, diplomas and certificates awarded, and selected test scores. The High School Transcript is programmed in Extensible Markup Language (XML), the widely adopted programming language that has enabled safe and reliable, real-time messaging and data exchange, and is accompanied by a comprehensive Implementation Guide that facilitates faster, more efficient programming.
See also: PESC references

W3C Releases Semantic Annotations for WSDL Working Draft
Joel Farrell and Holger Lausen (eds), SAWSDL Working Group WD
W3C's Semantic Annotations for Web Services Description Language (SAWSDL) Working Group has released a First Public Working Draft for "Semantic Annotations for WSDL". The objective of the Semantic Annotations for WSDL Working Group is to develop a mechanism to enable annotation of Web services descriptions. This mechanism will take advantage of the WSDL 2.0 extension mechanisms to build a simple and generic support for semantics in Web services. The Working Draft "Semantic Annotations for WSDL" defines how to add semantic annotations to WSDL 2.0 components. The specification defines extension attributes that can be applied to both WSDL elements and XML Schema elements to annotate input and output messages defined in a WSDL 2.0 interface. Semantic annotations are references from an element within a WSDL or XML Schema document to a concept in an ontology. This specification defines annotation mechanisms for relating WSDL inputs and outputs to concepts defined in an outside ontology. Similarly, it defines how to annotate WSDL operations and how to categorize WSDL interfaces. Further, it defines an annotation mechanism for specifying the structural mapping of XML Schema types to and from an ontology. The annotation mechanism is independent of the ontology expression language and this specification requires no particular ontology language.
See also: W3C Web Services Activity

OMG Adopts Systems Modeling Language
Darryl K. Taft, eWEEK
The Object Management Group has announced the adoption of the OMG Systems Modeling Language as a standard. The Needham, Mass.-based OMG and the International Council on Systems Engineering worked together to extend the OMG's UML (Unified Modeling Language) specification to come up with SysML, said Richard Soley, chairman and CEO of the OMG. SysML is a general-purpose graphical modeling language for specifying, analyzing, designing and verifying complex systems that may include hardware, software, information, personnel, procedures and facilities. As a subset of UML 2.0, SysML provides systems engineers with graphical representation and semantic foundation for system requirements. Annex D of the specification ('Model Interchange') describes several methods for exchanging SysML models between tools. The first method discussed is XML Metadata Interchange (XMI), which is the preferred method for exchanging models between UML-based tools. The second approach describes the use of ISO 10303-233 Application Protocol: Systems engineering and design (AP233), which is one of the series of STEP (Standard for the Exchange of Product Model Data) neutral data schemas for representing engineering data. Other model interchange approaches are possible, but the ones described in this annex are expected to be the primary ones supported by SysML.
See also: the specification

Genuitec MyEclipse 5.0 Links
Paul Krill, InfoWorld
Genuitec will link the rival NetBeans and Eclipse open source technologies in a preview release of the MyEclipse 5.0 environment for enterprise and Web application development being unveiled on 2006-07-07. Built on top of the Eclipse software development kit, the preview version is dubbed a Milestone 2 release. It will have most of the new functionality to be featured in the general release of MyEclipse 5.0, due in August. MyEclipse 5.0 offers users multiple ways to build Web applications, with support for technologies such as AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML), JavaServer Pages, and Struts. A highlight of version 5.0 is inclusion of Matisse4MyEclipse, an interface builder based on the NetBeans Matisse technology. Also in version 5.0 is a framework for rapidly developing Web services through a series of wizards and interfaces. The framework is based on the XFire SOAP framework. AJAX extensions in the product enable developers to more easily build rich, dynamic Web applications, Genuitec said. Also, the Struts 1.2.X framework, with Tiles technology, is supported in version 5.0. Tiles is a component of Struts for building user interfaces. Integration with the Eclipse Web Tools Platform includes support of the "Facets" concept, which involves relating entities based on relationships.

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