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Re: xml forms

From: Joseph Kesselman <keshlam@us.ibm.com>
Date: Thu, 5 Jul 2001 19:18:13 -0400
To: www-dom@w3.org
Message-ID: <OF0E53A626.669AFAB9-ON85256A80.007EC250@pok.ibm.com>

>By forms, I mean - like the  html forms. When an end user wants to send
>some data to the server he/she needs to fill in the "user info or
>requiremnets". If I wish to use xml, instead of the html how would I
>proceed. I think my question makes some sense.

It makes sense, but not exactly as you've asked it.

XML itself is really a meta-language -- a "langauge for writing languages".
By itself it's pure syntax, and has no meaning; meaning is assigned by the
specific XML-based language you're working in. If you're familiar with
SGML, you can think of XML as occupying the same niche.

 There are a number of different XML-based languages which include the
concept of forms. In addition to the language itself you'll need a tool on
the client system which understands how to present the particular language
you've chosen in a form that the user can interact with, gather the user's
responses, and send that data to the server.

Which langauge, and which tool, would be best depends on your exact needs.
The minimal-effort  choice would be XHTML., which is essentially a dialect
of HTML based on XML (rather than being based on SGML, as is the case for
traditional HTML).  The downside is that XHTML is no more powerful, and
just as architecturally ugly, as HTML... but the advantage is that
well-written XHTML will actually work in most existing HTML browsers.

If you need to do something more sophisticated than that, you'll have to do
some research to find out what other forms langauges have been based on XML
and which of them have client software that will run on your machines and
talk to your servers. One interesting option would be to focus specifically
on XForms; see http://www.w3.org/MarkUp/Forms/ for more information.

In any case, this isn't really a DOM question. It'd be a more appropriate
topic for the XML-DEV mailing list ; you can learn more about that
discussion at  http://xml.org/xml-dev/index.shtml

Joe Kesselman  / IBM Research
Received on Thursday, 5 July 2001 19:18:45 UTC

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