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It is interesting that articles about XML messaging discuss the
advantages of messaging thoroughly but when the question of
'why XML' comes up, the answers are reduced to 'because it
is there'. In some articles, the problems of XML verbosity
and other nits are elaborated, but at the end, the same
answer 'because it is there' or 'there are no attractive
alternatives' are given. Laziness or just momentum?
While I don't expect an industry with so much invested in
XML to do this, I am surprised that universities and other
research labs are not working on that side of the problem.
Perhaps they are but aren't saying much about it.
Indeed, when a binary XML as an alternative is proposed and
solutions are documented, the WG is asked to jump through
hoops not asked of any other working group.
That kind of institutional resistance to innovation is
strikingly strange. That XML will be replaced eventually
is almost certain given it's inefficiencies for this
particular application. While that time has not come, it is
a provocative thought experiment to speculate on the shape
and characteristics of its successor.
o A simpler XML?
o A smarter XML?
o Binary XML
All known and there have been attempts.
The third is what some were after before the web.
Why not send compiled objects? (I know
some of these reasons but from time to time, it is useful to
start from a fresh perspective.)