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XML and Complex Systems (1998)


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This presentation was delivered in early 1998 and it was given at a meeting of the Microsoft Users Group. The intent of the presentation was to help people understand why XML had emerged and what lessons had been learned in the years leading up to the framing of XML.

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XML and Complex Systems (1998)

  1. 1. XML or “I’ve got apiece of Datalodged in my Web” Joe Gollner, M.Phil. Delivered 1998 to the Microsoft Users Group
  2. 2. Topics• XML Concepts• XML and the Internet• Back to the Future• Killer Apps • Power Web Publishing • Software Design and Maintenance• The Future
  3. 3. A subset of SGMLWhat is XML? optimized for use on the web - MicrosoftThe Extensible Markup Language is theuniversal format for data on the web - Microsoft
  4. 4. What about HTML?? HTML is for viewing data XML is for working with data Microsoft
  5. 5. Why is XML Hot Now? (SGML has been around forever)• The Internet has changed everything • There are no closed systems now • Systems must work on diverse and changing platforms• Data and behaviour must cross boundaries intact• Microsoft is among the first to really see this
  6. 6. The Evolution of the Web It’s not just for documents anymore• Web Technology was designed for Pages • Simple, pre-determined formatting • Static views of information• But the Web can be more... • A shared application domain • A data interchange medium • A window onto continuously integrated information
  7. 7. What has been missing?• A platform-independent format for data• An intelligent data format that • offers more than simple formatting • supports advanced processing• A format that can describe: • Data constraints • Complex relationships • Application behaviour
  8. 8. We’ve been Data fordown this Complexroad before Systems
  9. 9. The Challenge: Integrating vast amounts of complex data...from different sources
  10. 10. And there’s more...Groups ofComplexSystems...must be able to inter-operate
  11. 11. and... new technologies are constantly introduced X-33
  12. 12. and...The newand the oldmust worktogether …in new environments
  13. 13. ...and there is alwaysConfigurationManagement No two instances of a system will be the same
  14. 14. The Role of SGML• Under the Defense CALS initiative (1985): • SGML became the key tool for integrating complex data sources• SGML offered: • Platform-independence • Intelligent processibility• The Vision (Holy Grail): • Massively integrated shared data environments
  15. 15. SGML in Defense Technical DocumentationReducing theLifecycle Costof Complex Systems
  16. 16. On Demand Printing Sub- SquadronsContractor Prime Equipment Contractor Management Team The Integrated Data Environment
  17. 17. Effective dataintegration makescomplex systems possible
  18. 18. So what does thishave to do with the Internet?
  19. 19. The Evolution of the Web A Platform for Complex Systems• It is time to go beyond Pages• It is time to build complex, Inter-enterprise systems• A few new applications • Power Web Publishing • Software Design and Maintenance
  20. 20. Power Web PublishingA Three Tier Architecture Microsoft Web Site
  21. 21. Everyday Complex Systems Software Design and Maintenance• Current Software Systems are • error-prone • susceptible to decay • Entropy • Corrosion • “Barniclization”• XML enables a new model
  22. 22. XML and Software Design• XML enables: • Object Orientation at the system level • platform-independent message interfaces • behaviour modulization • critical for maintenance • critical for multi-platform installation • behaviour abstraction • critical for language independence
  23. 23. XML is the missing ingredient in the Fractal Enterprise []