OASIS Mailing List ArchivesView the OASIS mailing list archive below
or browse/search using MarkMail.


Help: OASIS Mailing Lists Help | MarkMail Help

election-services message

[Date Prev] | [Thread Prev] | [Thread Next] | [Date Next] -- [Date Index] | [Thread Index] | [Elist Home]

Subject: Re: EML Clarifying Questions

Karl and Deborah - Thank you for your responses to my last email to the 
list, they were helpful.

Gregg - Thank you, also, for your comments. The further explanations on the 
committee 'statement of purpose' and creating sub-specifications for EML 
were clarifying.

A few follow-up thoughts…


Gregg McGilvray wrote:
"I think that you are reading too much into the statement of purpose."

Hmm. Perhaps so. Just trying to get a handle on the parameters and 
perspectives that define what EML will become.


"Any interchange of data will be to a software package or a hardware device."

With my references to various people using or creating XML - such as with 
direct person-to-person data interchange or with the creation of an XML 
representation of a punch-card ballot - the underlying idea was that the 
people would be interacting with XML via some form of software tool. I was 
assuming this would be understood, so I didn't state it explicitly.


"Since XML is an electronic data interchange standard the primary focus 
would be on communications between electronic devices and systems."

XML is commonly used for data-interchange, however it's also used for other 
purposes. Some examples …

- Cocoon stores content in XML format, then dynamically transforms it and 
serves it out in many different formats - HTML, PDF, WML, XHTML, etc. The 
XML data remains on the server. (http://xml.apache.org/cocoon/)

- XHTML can be used, just as HTML is, to create electronic documentation 
for software programs. The XHTML travels from a CD-ROM or hard disk to the 
person's monitor screen, but not (necessarily) across a network. 

- XUL is used to define cross-platform user interfaces. In the case of the 
Mozilla and Netscape 6 browsers, XUL resides on the same computer the 
browser is on. It doesn't travel between machines. 

- DocBook can be used for "direct authoring" and for "publishing directly 
to paper". Neither of these uses involves data-interchange. 

- Conglomerate is considering using XML for enhanced source code editing. 
The XML would remain on a single machine. 

- OpenOffice and StarOffice are working to use XML as the native file 
format for their application programs - including word processing, 
spreadsheets, etc. This would involve only a single computer. 

To quote Erik Ray, author of "Learning XML" from O'Reilly -

"On one level, XML is a protocol for containing and managing information. 
On another level, it's a family of technologies that can do everything from 
formatting documents to filtering data. And on the highest level, it's a 
philosophy for information handling that seeks maximum usefulness and 
flexibility for data by refining it to its purest and most structured form. 
A thorough understanding of XML touches on all these levels."  (Learning 
XML, page 2)

I tend to think that focusing exclusively on using XML for data-interchange 
hinders the discovery of ways in which XML can deliver maximum benefit to 
the elections community.


I haven't yet had the time to write out some thoughts on presentation and 
accessibility issues. I will get to that when I can.

Best Regards,

[Date Prev] | [Thread Prev] | [Thread Next] | [Date Next] -- [Date Index] | [Thread Index] | [Elist Home]

Powered by eList eXpress LLC