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   Re: [xml-dev] IBM's idea off an XML expert

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On Fri,  3 Jan 2003 15:05:25 -0500, Simon St.Laurent 
<simonstl@simonstl.com> wrote:

> The last time I looked
> at the questions, it seemed like an odd mix of obvious stuff and
> minutiae, and reality tends to lurk someplace in the middle.

That's my impression too, and I agree with Ken Holman's assessment as well.

The "essence" of XML is not that hard to grasp in technical terms, and the 
details of the minutiae can be looked up when necessary.  To whatever 
limited extent I could be considered an "XML expert", it is because I 
"grok" what it is good for and not good for (and have some sense of what 
the various related specs such as DOM, XSLT, XQuery, etc. are good for and 
not good for).  It's hard to test for whether someone "groks" XML, and 
conversely someone could have memorized all 5,000 or whatever it is pages 
of the specs and not have a clue as to how to use it effectively in the 
real world.

So, from a technical perspective, I am inclined to doubt that this kind of 
XML certification proves much other than one's ability to read a few books 
and recall the material when tested. I would certainly have to "cram" in 
order to pass the IBM one! (the last time I looked at it a couple of years 

Whether the HR departments of the world would be impressed by someone's XML 
certification is a question I'm not competent to answer.  I for one one 
much rather hire someone who can hold their own in a discussion of "how 
might we use XMLtechnologies  to solve this problem" than someone who has 
been officially certified as an XML expert.


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