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   RE: [xml-dev] XML=WAP? And DOA?

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>The more people will hit their heads trying to process XML
>with standard APIs - the easeir it would be to make a next 
>I'm almost sure that somebody tried to make a next step 
>already ( well, YAML tried for sure ), I'm afraid that we 
>just don't know.
>I'm sorry for repeating myself, but XSLScript ( and XQuery ;-),  
>is  *mixing*  non-xml-ish syntax with XML. Of course, 
>the resulting mix is no longer XML. But it is *very* 
>handy *because* it is not XML. .
>And how do you call the resulting mix ( with < and with { ) 
>Isn't it ... just another markup language? ;-)

We too built a kind of "next-step" programming language, that we called
EXOGEN (I described it in a previous post [1]). This language is implemented
as an XML-to-Java compiler, that takes in input XML documents with
"behaviour" tags, embedded Java code and expression, as well as embedded
XPath expressions. There are ideas similar on what you can find in XSP, a
technology built in Cocoon [2]. The resulting Java code simply uses various
APIs (amongst which SAX, DOM, JAXP and JAXEN) to do the work, is dynamically
(e.g. at runtime) compiled to bytecode and therefore executes very fast.

EXOGEN literally saved us days and days of coding DOM-ish Java code, though
the pages written with it are rather ugly to look at (they tend to look like
XML+Perl, but don't run away yet). We developed it in a rather informal way,
meaning that we added features as we needed them, while trying to reduce the
Java/EXOGEN code ratio. One of my mid-term objective is to refactor it to a
more consistent language, EXOGEN v3 (or any other name), cleaning it up and
building from our 2 years of using the language, without caring about upward
compatibility (we now have a quite big code base in EXOGEN v2 that prevented
us from introducing lots of radical language changes).

We debated about the opportunity to patent the technology in my company. We
gave up the idea, because we felt that it would be way too costly for our
little structure (yep !), and that there was a potential overlap with
Cocoon's XSP.

I think I'm going to reschedule a meeting on the subject, to decide whether
it would be possible for us to at least donate the specs of the language to
the open-source community, so that anybody could scavenge good ideas out of
it. Maybe the best thing would be to work with the XSP people at Cocoon. The
biggest problem is to find time to write down those specs in English, as
everything was done in French here :), and/or to collaborate with the XSP

Nicolas Lehuen
Responsable R&D / Head of R&D
UBICCO, the Multi-Access Software Vendor

[1] http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/200108/msg00853.html
[2] http://xml.apache.org/cocoon1/wd-xsp.html


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