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Disclaimer: The following is my own terminology that helps me sort out the
world. I'm not trying to impose it on anyone, just sharing it for what its
It's nice to know about your own terminology. However, in order to be
useful, a terminology should be widely shared by a community. I'm really not
sure this is the case for yours. Anyhow, my own terminology is quite
different. See below for a few comments.
By "atomic" or "electronic" document [...]
The usual meaning for "atomic" applies to things, entities, objects,
properties or whatever that you cannot, or do not want to, break into
pieces. Anything to do with "electronic"? This reminds me: There are two
kinds of cars: Japan-made cars (my brother-in-law got tons of engine
problems with a Toyota), and cars parked down Canyon Street (that's where my
sweetheart's living) that are not red (I hate that guy's red car).
Generally, a "message" is a machine-to-machine data transfer (e.g., from one
database to another database).
A message is not the same thing as a transfer. If only for one reason, it's
because messages are just the stuff that's transferred. Incidentally,
databases do not transfer anything. DBMSs do.
A "protocol" is a series of messages that follow one of many
Protocols are not made of messages. They are rules specifying which messages
are well-formed, and which exchanges are allowed.
At that point I gave up.