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   More chaos coming down the pike

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  • From: "Mike Spreitzer" <spreitze@parc.xerox.com>
  • To: <xml-dev@ic.ac.uk>
  • Date: Sun, 22 Aug 1999 01:41:39 PDT

Sun and the OMG are preparing to standardize two more arcs (XML schema
-> Java and XML schema -> OMG IDL, respectively) in an already large
and inconsistent graph of data modelling languages.  Below I have a
very partial listing of data languages and mappings between them.

I recommend (and have sent essentially this same message to the
responsible bodies) that new standardization efforts should take this
picture into account, and strive for maximal consistency with the
explicit mappings and implied (via composition) mappings already
extant.  As the mappings already extant are not consistent, this
immediately tells us that new mapping standards should leave some
choices to an external "mapping choices" document.

A possible motivation for the XML schema -> OMG IDL mapping is the desire
to be able to easily import into the CORBA world standards already
developed in the XML world.  But it is also interesting to be able to
easily import into the XML world standards already developed in the
CORBA world.  This says that the XML schema -> OMG IDL mapping needs
to be *onto*, not just *into*, OMG IDL --- that is, it should be
possible to map some XML schema into any given IDL.  Similar
considerations apply to the XML schema -> Java effort.

While the "marshalling framework" of the proposed XML Data Binding
specification "is not in any way intended to displace the object
serialization mechanism that is already a central part of the Java
platform", perhaps it should be a generalization.  Another reason to
generalize Java serialization is that there is no inherent reason that
a given Java object should have only one serialization, which (as far
as I know) is a limitation of the current facility; I already have
heard colleagues complain that they want different serializations for
different purposes.

Languages that can model Data:

UML, OMG IDL, Microsoft IDL, Java, C++,
XML Schema:
    SOX <http://www.commerceone.com/solutions/xml/sox/sox.htm>,
    XML-Data <http://www.w3.org/TR/1998/NOTE-XML-data/>,
    XML-Data-Reduced <http://www.ltg.ed.ac.uk/~ht/XMLData-Reduced.htm>,
    DCD <http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-dcd>,
    DDML <http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-ddml>,
RDF & RDF schema,

mappings between languages:


Java serialization


XML Data Binding

a hypothetical "Java archive" facility, mentioned in the XML Data Binding
JSR above

CommerceOne's SOX->Java mapping

IBM XML BeanMaker

Coins <http://www.jxml.com/coins/index.html>

KOML <http://www.inria.fr/koala/XML/serialization/>

OMG IDL<->Java:



Forthcoming OMG Request For Proposals (from the ORBOS task force)

Microsoft IDL<->Java:


XML<->Microsoft IDL:

Microsoft SOAP / Userland XML-RPC

OMG IDL<->Microsoft IDL:

Chapter 18 in CORBA 2.3


Rational Rose


Rational Rose



IBM's DataCraft


W3C's XML-based syntax for RDF, in RDF spec

RDF schema <-> XML schema:

subject of debate in W3C

More than two sided:

WDDX <http://www.wddx.org/>
XMOP <http://jabr.ne.mediaone.net/documents/xmop.htm>

Mike Spreitzer <spreitze@parc.xerox.com>
http://parcweb.parc/spreitze/ (Xerox internal)
http://www.parc.xerox.com/spreitze/ (external)

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