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   Re: [xml-dev] JSR 225 - XQJ: JDBC for XQuery

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At 3:41 PM -0400 6/10/03, Jonathan Robie wrote:
>Oracle and IBM have now submitted JSR 225, the XQuery API for Java 
>(XQJ). This API performs essentially the same role as JDBC, except 
>that it is for XQuery rather than SQL, and is based on XML rather 
>than the relational model.

It is time to remind ourselves of what James Gosling figured out in 
1990. A successful standard needs to wait until there's some actual 
experience in the field being standardized. 
<http://java.sun.com/people/jag/StandardsPhases/> You don't want to 
standardize until you understand the problem domain, and have seen 
multiple, competing possibilities.

XQuery is not even finished yet. There's virtually no experience in 
the community with any XQuery APIs. It is far too early to be 
thinking about any sort of standard XQuery API. IBM. Oracle, and 
anybody else who wants to should go ahead and design XQuery APIs so 
we can learn from them and use them. However, they should not yet 
attempt to standardize these. Any API designed at this early time is 
guaranteed to have flaws, both errors of omission and commission. We 
simply don't know enough to do better. Standardizing now would just 
lock in these inevitable mistakes.

This JSR should be rejected in toto. None of this should be seen as 
preventing Oracle and IBM from working on XQuery APIs. However, 
before we establish any API as *the* XQuery API for Java, we need to 
have at least a year or two's worth of actual production experience 
with different XQuery APIs so we can learn what works and what 
doesn't, and what should be standardized and what shouldn't.

   Elliotte Rusty Harold
   Processing XML with Java (Addison-Wesley, 2002)


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