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   RE: [xml-dev] xml, books

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> -----Original Message-----
> From: Simon St.Laurent [mailto:simonstl@simonstl.com] 
> Sent: Monday, October 13, 2003 7:01 PM
> To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
> Subject: [xml-dev] xml, books
> My current guesses as to why this decline is happening include:
> The amount of XML most programmers need 
> is in the  
>     intro books, maybe supplemented with something 
> environment-specific  
>     like Java & XML. 
>  Big books for small problems - 
>     While some of us do have complex problems we need to 
> solve with XML, 
>     it seems like 80% of the XML out there is produced by people who 
>     know about elements and attributes and maybe the built-in 
> entities.  
>     XML is ubiquitous, but in forms which don't require 
> enormous study.
>     These folks don't really need multiple books - they can 
> find what    
>     they need online easily enough.

From my experiences with users of XML both within the company I work for
and our customers your opinions above seem fairly accurate. Developers
are more interested in technologies and tools to make the little bit of
XML they grok and use regularly easier to use than being interested in
even more standards and even more complexity. There are only so many
books the average developer using XML for building config files needs to
get his or her job done. 

The growing family of XML standards are of more interest to XML gurus
and tools vendors than they are to rank and file developers. The kind of
information the average developer needs to get their work done with XML
is primarily satisfied by online sources and intro books (if any). 

If anything this is a sign of XML's growing maturity. Tim Bray's blog
post also mentions revenue from Perl books dropping by over 50% for a
particular publisher. Besides the current economic state I suspect that
this is less likely a sign that Perl is fading from use and more an
indication that most people who are going to use Perl already have books
while the rest are being satisfied with the extensive online resources. 

If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably
worth it.                                                            

This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no



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