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XML in Infoworld



This just in.

It's clearly going to be an uphill struggle to explain that we're not
trying to replace HTML.

On the other hand, it sure is nice to see all those big companies
endorsing our effort.  :-)

---

 Date: 01-03-97
 Source: InfoWorld
 Subject: W3C preps markup-language standards despite Netscape's snub

 A new Web standard is brewing that could help users better manage
 mountains of Web documents -- but the lack of support by market leader
 Netscape could dampen the standards-making process.

 Members of a World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) committee are in the
 process of writing specifications for Extensible Markup Language
 (XML), a new version of HTML that provides methods for defining
 Web-based content in a more granular manner than is possible today.

 The committee will present XML to the Web Consortium at its April 7
 meeting in Santa Clara, Calif., and a new standard could be approved
 by late June or early July, said Marion Elledge, vice president of
 information technology for the Graphic Communications Association, a
 trade group that promoted Standard Generalized Markup Language, the
 father of HTML, and now supports XML.

 The drive behind XML is that HTML tags offer limited capability to
 define data. XML is a methodology that will allow Web publishers to
 create new tags in a standardized manner. The tags would allow content
 to be searched by document structure or content fields, as well as by
 text strings, as is done today.

 For instance, an automobile manufacturer could use XML to define tags
 for automobile parts so that content developed for a Web-based catalog
 could be extracted and then reused later to create an owner's manual,
 Elledge explained.

 Other supporters of XML are Digital, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, JavaSoft,
 Microsoft, Novell, Spyglass, and Sun. But notably missing is an
 endorsement from Netscape, which stated that it believes the
 extensions are not needed.

 One expert said Netscape's holdout highlights a classic standard's
 effort dilemma: the struggle to find common ground among vendors
 vs. the market leader's desire to assert its influence by developing
 its own additions.

 "Netscape has been trying to drive the market through proprietary
 extensions for some time," said Clay Ryder, an analyst at Zona
 Research, a Mountain View, Calif.-based company that tracks Internet
 trends.

 However, the Netscape extensions have helped drive innovation so a
 standards-based approach isn't necessarily the only right way to go,
 Ryder added.

 The Graphic Communications Association, based in Alexandria, Va., can
 be reached at (703) 519-8160 or http://www.gca.org/.