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   RE: [xml-dev] are native XML databases needed?

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Linda Grimaldi <grimlinda@earthlink.net> writes:

> The statement was motivated by an earlier thread on this 
> list, where one person was obviously thinking in XML document 
> terms, and the other in XML database terms.  I found that 
> thread frustrating because the two people in it were 
> obviously talking at cross-purposes- an XML database is not 
> simply a collection of documents, which is perhaps a better 
> way of stating it.
> Moreover, there were (are?) several XML database offerings 
> that used relational engines under the hood, so there is a 
> distinction to be made between those implementations and the 
> ones that started "from scratch" with the underlying 
> assumption that XML would be the data stored.  Both called 
> themselves "native", although one was a wrappering of 
> relational technology.  And if you can succeed in wrappering 
> it efficiently enough, eliminate schema dependencies, and 
> provide a pure XML interface, who's to know the difference?

Hmmm, didn't I just say that earlier today? :-)

> I also wonder- if you have a complex set of related XML 
> documents, such that different document types point to one 
> another in relationships that are not well-modeled 
> hierarchically, do you end up building something that looks 
> pretty relational anyway?  If you want to avoid lots of data 
> duplication, you probably do. Hence the concept of the 
> XML-Relational hybrid, I suppose.  Don't know if it really 
> works, but I can see where it might come in handy. 
Yes, if you're doing graph traversal straight XML doesn't really help
vs. relational (it's messy either way).  And yes, as I pointed out
earlier, a relational mapping design really works.  It's "interesting"
(as in the Chinese curse meaning of interesting) getting the whole thing
to perform efficiently, but we can retrieve thousands of node/attributes
with sub-second response time.

<snip>Other relational vs. XML DB discussion</snip>


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