OASIS Mailing List ArchivesView the OASIS mailing list archive below
or browse/search using MarkMail.


Help: OASIS Mailing Lists Help | MarkMail Help



   Re: XML: Still Just HypedWebStuff

[ Lists Home | Date Index | Thread Index ]
  • From: Matthew Gertner <matthew@praxis.cz>
  • To: "'xml-dev@ic.ac.uk'" <xml-dev@ic.ac.uk>
  • Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1999 10:19:00 +0100

Len Bullard wrote:
> Ask yourself why ANY good technical VP responsible for the
> bottom line of his company implements a technology that
> costs more to implement and maintain owing to the instability of the
> platforms, has to be sold for less given the hyped perception of
> ease and ubiquity, and in the end, gives moreorless the same
> results as the relational system and CSV?
> Cost justify XML.

This is interesting argument, but:

1) It is far from clear that XML solutions will have to be sold for less
because of "hyped perception of ease and ubiquity". My experience is
that people are willing to pay more for XML when the advantages are made
clear to them (and it helps to have the press screaming from the
rooftops about how this is the Next Big Thing). As far as
commoditization is concerned: there is an interesting article in the
Economist this week that disputes this claim (at
Their conclusions seem to be borne out in fact. People would rather shop
at Amazon, where they know the interface, like the features and trust
the vendor, than save $2 and shop at an anonymous vendor competing only
on price. It's true that as XML becomes more prevalent the way people
shop on the Web will change radically, but it is a safe bet that vendors
will continue to find ways other than price to differentiate their

2) Do you really think that XML gives the same results as an RDBMS and
CSV? Just to give one example, if I have a PHP/ColdFusion/ASP/whatever
site delivering HTML and I suddenly discover that I need to support WAP
(or Ariba Network or PDF or...) I am forced to reimplement everything
and then maintain my two (or three or four) versions in parallel. If I
go for an XML-based solution, then much of my site logic can be drawn up
out of the RDBMS into the XML layer, and the step to the various
delivery formats is only a transformation away. Saving time means saving
money, how's that for a cost justification?

Nevertheless, there is a need for people to start implementing stuff and
establishing a community where schemas, stylesheets and the like can be
"discovered" rather than developed from scratch whenever needed. We also
need more and better tools, especially on the authoring side. The
investment in getting an XML-based solution up and running is relatively
high, and even the subsequent leverage that this provides will pay back
this investment relatively quickly. There's a real risk that
out-of-the-box solutions will appear that provide only a portion of the
potential added value of XML but are so easy to implement and deploy
that they edge more powerful approaches out of the market. Something to
be scared about.


xml-dev: A list for W3C XML Developers. To post, mailto:xml-dev@ic.ac.uk
Archived as: http://www.lists.ic.ac.uk/hypermail/xml-dev/ and on CD-ROM/ISBN 981-02-3594-1
To unsubscribe, mailto:majordomo@ic.ac.uk the following message;
unsubscribe xml-dev
To subscribe to the digests, mailto:majordomo@ic.ac.uk the following message;
subscribe xml-dev-digest
List coordinator, Henry Rzepa (mailto:rzepa@ic.ac.uk)


News | XML in Industry | Calendar | XML Registry
Marketplace | Resources | MyXML.org | Sponsors | Privacy Statement

Copyright 2001 XML.org. This site is hosted by OASIS