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   RE: [xml-dev] Xml file sizes

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  • To: "Byarlay, Wayne A." <wab@purdue.edu>, <xml-dev@lists.xml.org>
  • Subject: RE: [xml-dev] Xml file sizes
  • From: "Nathan Young -X \(natyoung - Artizen at Cisco\)" <natyoung@cisco.com>
  • Date: Mon, 21 Nov 2005 12:20:19 -0800
  • Thread-index: AcXu0iIHSeCyXeIlSGOAk314P6V70gABE6+Q
  • Thread-topic: [xml-dev] Xml file sizes

Hi Wayne.

You probably wouldn't design XML that way.  If you used <person>
elements with <name> and <address> children, you could use an XML query
language (xpath for example, there are several) to ask questions of your
document like "how many people live on elm street" or "give me the
addresses of everyone whose name starts with J"

Really, it makes little sense to look at an XML document and a (for
example) csv file and try to decide which is better.  You're more likely
to make a good decision if you start with what you need to do with your
data, and then explore how people have solved that set of problems for
various data formats that exist today.

In terms of discussions on this list, the general question "why choose
XML over (something else) when XML is (more bloated)(too
hierarchical)(not hierarchical enough)(not supported by the right
tools)(too trendy)(not binary)(too document oriented)(too data
oriented)(too arbitrary)(not restrictive enough)(too restrictive)(etc
etc etc)"  is a permathread.

In particular, "XML files are too big" has been shown to be irrelevant
to a significant majority of applications and very important within a
very specific subset.  If you are worried that your particular
application will suffer performance-wise because you use XML, you should
provide the details to the list and it's likely that someone with
relevant knowledge can give you a fairly specific idea of what to
expect, based on real world experience.


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Byarlay, Wayne A. [mailto:wab@purdue.edu] 
> Sent: Monday, November 21, 2005 11:31 AM
> To: xml-dev@lists.xml.org
> Subject: [xml-dev] Xml file sizes
> Hello all.
> Well, an xml file has finally shown up on my doorstep. Before 
> last week, I only had a vague idea of what XML was; now I've 
> come to understand that it's a method for basically storing 
> data. However, something is bothering me. So, let me play 
> devil's advocate here.
> If XML uses tags such as <blablabla>This is my 
> data</blablabla>, is that not a lot of extra bytes to simply 
> declare the end of a field?
> And to take it a step further: if I have several records, but 
> the fields are always sequential, such as:
> <my record>
>     <field1>Bubba Smith</field1>
>     <field2>123 Elm Street</field2>
> </my record>
> <my 2nd record>
>     <field1>Sally Ryder</field1>
>     <field2>123 Elm Street</field2>
> </my 2nd record>
> ...Wow, to me, that just seems like many redundant bits of 
> data. So, how is XML better than, say, a file where the field 
> headers (and footers) are smaller?
> Sorry if this message is a waste of your time, but I am 
> really questioning the practicality of XML. maybe certain 
> platforms or languages process it faster?
> wab.


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