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RE: [XForms] Re: Will Internet Explorer support XForms

From: Mark Seaborne <MSeaborne@origoservices.com>
Date: Fri, 10 Oct 2003 11:58:51 +0100
Message-ID: <DC65AE678B89004B9CCB202E19482CC73BBBE0@mail.origoservices.local>
To: <AndrewWatt2001@aol.com>
Cc: <www-forms@w3.org>, <XForms@yahoogroups.com>

Andrew,

>>I think whatever the differences in functionality are between 
>>InfoPath and XForms, for many organisations it all boils 
>>down to who owns the underlying technology. The industry I work for
>>(UK Life Insurance) already has its own forms markup language widely >>deployed, using both client rendering software specific to the 
>>language, and server-side transforms to HTML. This is working today, >>and has been for several years. We operate in a world where a form
>>may be deployed in many different ways, and by organisations other >>than the form originator.

>>Such an inter-organisational infrastructure is only viable if every
>>one adopts the same underlying forms technology. 

>Why?
 
E.g. A form will be authored by company X, and perhaps deployed by them on one or two of their own channels. The form will also be deployed by three third parties for use by potentially thousands of end users, some of whom work in organisation with a sophisticated IT infrastructure, while others have a telephone and fax machine. The form cannot be reauthored in any way.

Key points are:

1) The form author does not know how the form is to be deployed at authoring time
2) Many organisations will host the same form, providing access to end users with many different delivery requirments.

It turned out to be cheaper and more practical to produce our own forms markup language than to leave all form generators and users to do their own thing.
   
>>XForms is only an option because it is an open standard, InfoPath, 
>>and other competing forms technologies, are not because they are
>>proprietary. It really is that simple. 

>Are you sure?
 
Yes.
 
>Just curious, but how is a server to tell the difference between an 
>XML instance document submitted by InfoPath and one submitted from an >XForms client?

For us XForms addresses forms/business rules deployment across organisations that have contractually regulated relationships. 

>I haven't seen the Adobe XML/PDF technology yet but if it submits an >identical XML instance document why should that automatically fail to >meet your needs?

Hopefully that should be clear from comments above.

>Does your industry's application require that the visible "form" of 
>the form is common? Or that the XML data submitted is?

Both or either depending on circumstances. Then there is the matter of the business rules underlying a form.

All the best

Mark
Received on Friday, 10 October 2003 07:02:10 GMT

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