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You know, it took so long to agree on something... XML is not the best
format but it's at least one everyone seemed to agree on.
Since several months I am studying the new features of relational DB, more
specifically XML/sql and xquery.
We took the challenge to eliminate the middle tier. The one involved into
transforming data into objects. To do so, we created a language to encode
objects into XML. Since the object definition comes from the client and the
latter ask the server to fill the template with data, the result is a
collection of objects encoded into XML. Later on, you can transform them
into java, ECMAScript or C#. All this dynamically.
This architecture is quite interesting since, it consists of only two tiers,
and the client specifies the format. Hence, because the client can specify
the format, the behavioral part of the object can be included in the
specification in a language the client understands.
So XML is maybe not the best format, but the tools created around it are
Didier PH Martin