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JAXP 1.3 Reference Implementation is out on java.net  JAXP 1.3 (JSR
206 ) became final in September and is included in the latest J2SE
release, J2SE 5.0 
JAXP 1.3 brings some cool new features in the area of XML processing and
support for the latest standards (DOM L3 Core, DOM L3 LS, SAX 2, XML 1.1,
XInclude) It introduces new Schema independent validation framework 
which de-couples the validation from parsing. Ability to compile Schema into an
memory representation which can validate different instances of XML
document greatly improves the performance of XML processing.
Accessing XML is made simple using XPath. JAXP 1.3 defines XPath APIs
 which provides access to the XPath evaluation environment and expression
results independent of the underlying data object model. JAXP 1.3 adds new
Datatypes  to the Java platform which maps to some of the W3C XML
Schema Datatypes. Thus bringing the support of Schema datatypes directly into
the Java platform. One can play around with these and can do some cool things,
mostly without understanding the complexities of XML Schema.
JAXP 1.3 adds the ability to reset  XML Parser and Transformer
instance , allowing application to reuse the same instance to process
multiple XML documents. This helps increasing the XML processing performance.
And also features for secure XML processing to avoid conditions such
as denial of service attacks. So checkout the JAXP 1.3 RI and Happy XML
Sun Microsystems has worked with the Apache Software Foundation in
previous implementation of JAXP and continues to do so with JAXP 1.3.
Sun is in the process of contributing back the implementation code to ASF.