Archives for January2009

XML in Everyday Things

If you didn’t follow the link below to Bob DuCharme’s response to my January 13 posting on Why it is Difficult to Include Semantics in Web Content, you should read it. Bob does a great job describing tools in use to include semantics in Web content. Bob is a very smart guy. I like to think the complexity of his answer is a good illustration of my point that adding semantics is not easy. Anyway, his response is clearly worth reading and can be found at http://www.snee.com/bobdc.blog/2009/01/publishers-and-semantic-web-te.html.

Also, I have known Bob for some time. I am reminded that a while back he wrote an interesting article about XML data produced by his TiVo device (see http://www.xml.com/pub/a/2006/02/15/hacking-the-xml-in-your-tivo.html). I was intrigued how XML had begun to pop up in everyday things.

Ever since that TiVo article, I think of Bob every time XML pops up in unexpected everyday places (it’s better than associating him with a trauma). Once in a while I get a glimpse of XML data in a printer control file, in Web page source code, or as an export format for some software, but that sort of thing is to be expected. We all have seen examples at work or in commercial settings, but to find XML data at home in everyday devices and applications has always warmed my biased heart.

Recently I was playing a game of Sid Meier’s Civilization IV (all work and no play and so on….) and I noticed while it was booting up a game that one of the messages said "Reading XML FIles". My first thought was "Bob would like to see this!" Then I was curious to see how XML was being used in game software. A quick Google search and the first entry, from Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Civilization_IV#cite_note-10), says "More game attributes are stored in XML files, which must be edited with an external text editor or application." Apparently you can "tweak simple game rules and change or add content. For instance, they can add new unit or building types, change the cost of wonders, or add new civilizations. Players can also change the sounds played at certain times or edit the play list for your soundtrack."

I poked around in the directories and found schemas describing game units, events, etc. and configuration data instances describing artifacts and activities used in the game. A user could, if they wanted to, make buying a specific building very cheap for instance, or have the game play their favorite music instead of what comes with the game. That is if they know how to edit XML data. I think I just found a way to add many hours of enjoyment to an already great game.

I wonder how much everyday XML is out there just waiting for someone to tweak it and optimize it to make something work better. A thermostat, a refrigerator, or a television perhaps. </>

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W3C Publishes Final Draft of XML Schema Definition Language (XSD) 1.1

The W3C XML Schema Working Group has published the Last Call Working Drafts of “W3C XML Schema Definition Language (XSD) 1.1 Part 1: Structures” and “Part 2: Datatypes.” This former specifies the XML Schema Definition Language, which offers facilities for describing the structure and constraining the contents of XML documents, including those which exploit the XML Namespace facility. The schema language, which is itself represented in an XML vocabulary and uses namespaces, substantially reconstructs and considerably extends the capabilities found in XML document type definitions (DTDs). The latter defines facilities for defining datatypes to be used in XML Schemas as well as other XML specifications. The datatype language, which is itself represented in XML, provides a superset of the capabilities found in XML document type definitions (DTDs) for specifying datatypes on elements and attributes. Comments are welcome through 20 February. Learn more about the Extensible Markup Language (XML) Activity. http://www.w3.org/XML/Schema

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Podcast on Structured Content in the Enterprise

Traditionally, the idea of structured content has always been associated with product documentation, but this is beginning to change. Featuring Bill Trippe, Lead Analyst at The Gilbane Group, and Bruce Sharpe, XMetaL Founding Technologist at JustSystems, a brand new podcast on The Business Value of Structured Content takes a look into why many companies are beginning to realize that structured content is more than just a technology for product documentation - it’s a means to add business value to information across the whole enterprise. 

From departmental assets such as marketing website content, sales training materials, or technical support documents, structured content can be used to grow revenue, reduce costs, and mitigate risks, ultimately leading to an improved customer experience.  

Listen to the podcast and gain important insight on how structured content can

  • break through the boundaries of product documentation
  • help organizations meet high user expectations for when and where they can access content
  • prove to be especially valuable in our rough economic times
  • …and more!

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Gilbane San Francisco pre-conference workshops posted

The main conference program will be published in a week or two, but the 1/2 day pre-conference workshop descriptions for June 2nd have been posted at: http://gilbanesf.com/workshops.html.
How to Select a Web Content Management System
Instructor: Seth Gottlieb, Principal, Content Here
Making SharePoint Work in the Enterprise
Instructor: Shawn Shell, Principal, Consejo, Inc.
Managing the Web: The Fundamentals of Web Operations Management
Instructor: Lisa Welchman, Founding Partner, Welchman Pierpoint
Getting Started with Business Taxonomy Design
Instructors: Joseph A. Busch, Founder and Principal, & Ron Daniel, Principal, Taxonomy Strategies LLC
Sailing the Open Seas of New Media
Instructor: Chris Brogan, President, New Marketing Labs, LLC

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Day Software Unveils Cloud-Ready CRX Content Infrastructure for Web 2.0 Applications

Day Software (SWX:DAYN)(OTCQX:DYIHY) announced the availability of three new licensed editions of CRX, Day’s JSR-170-compliant Java Content Repository (JCR). These new editions make it simpler for companies to standardize on an enterprise-ready content infrastructure based on Day’s commercial implementation of Apache Jackrabbit and Apache Sling. This release is enhanced by a licensing model that promotes adoption by individual developers, departments and global enterprises. Day now offers three targeted editions of its content infrastructure platform: CRX One: CRX One is a new version of CRX licensed for use to power a single Web application. CRX One is Day’s entry-level CRX offering, available directly from Day’s Web site for an annual subscription license fee of US$18,500 per server instance per year, regardless of the number of CPUs; CRX Developer: CRX Developer is a limited license version of CRX available free of charge for Apache Jackrabbit and Apache Sling developers directly from Day’s Web site. Web developers can use CRX Developer at no cost under an annual renewal license for building and testing new CRX-based content applications; CRX Enterprise: CRX Enterprise is Day’s premier CRX offering for use in powering multiple Web applications. CRX Enterprise is targeted for IT departments looking to consolidate disparate enterprise content repositories under a single, shared cluster of CRX. Organizations can seamlessly update their CRX One licenses to CRX Enterprise to host multiple applications without installing or managing new software. CRX Enterprise is offered under a perpetual license model that starts at US$50,000 per server instance. Day CRX Developer is available free of charge immediately from Day’s Web site at http://www.day.com

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Exalead Announces CloudView OEM Edition 5.0

Exalead announced the availability of CloudView OEM Edition 5.0, an embeddable, scalable search and information application development platform designed specifically for ISVs and SaaS providers. In conjunction with this release, Exalead also announced a new OEM pricing framework. E- mail archiving, content management, product life-cycle management, storage, call center and other information management application vendors can now use Exalead CloudView technology to address the Web 2.0-based information access application market. Exalead CloudView 5.0 addresses the following design requirements encountered by information software vendors: large amounts of data (petabytes); ability to aggregate, collate, and normalize data gathered from disparate structured and unstructured sources – HTML, Microsoft Office documents and other files scattered across corporate servers, data located at SaaS providers, active and archived e-mail, relational data, proprietary application data, etc.; web-based (fuzzy) and enterprise (precise) relevancy models; small CPU and disk footprints; large, difficult-to-forecast user volumes; high peak user concurrency; transparently supporting existing user interfaces, security models and data sources; multiple language support (50+ languages supported). http://www.Exalead.com

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Recommind Releases MindServer Search 6.0

Recommind announced the availability of MindServer Search 6.0, the latest version of its enterprise search product. Built on Recommind’s CORE platform (Context Optimized Relevancy Engine), the latest version adds features such as enhanced relevancy tuning and extends the system’s federated search framework. MindServer Search 6.0 is built on Recommind’s CORE platform, an automated information management layer which integrates structured and unstructured data inside and outside of enterprise networks. MindServer Search 6.0 allows enterprises to boost certain search results based on select properties of a document, including: freshness, rank, specific metadata and document length. Search results can feature ‘Best Bets’ which are preselected files linked to particular queries. Also available is a ‘Sponsored Links’ feature, which brings external or indexed documents to the user’s attention through specific queries, but places them outside of the standard search results area. In addition, users can choose to boost results based on their individual profile or that of their team. MindServer Search 6.0′s federated search capabilities enable users to search across internal and external data sources with one query. http://www.recommind.com

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CrowdGather Announces Beta and Launch of CrowdReport Forum Content Management System

CrowdGather (OTCBB:CRWG), announced that it has completed a beta deployment of its new content management system (CMS) for forum owners. By implementing its proprietary forum CMS CrowdReport, CrowdGather immediately increases a particular site’s visual appeal to members, visitors, and advertisers. More importantly, the CMS enhances the user-experience by converting user-generated content into zero-cost editorial content for the site. CrowdGather expects to have deployed the CMS on its busiest sites by the end of February. http://www.crowdgather.com

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Sajan Releases Authoring Coach 3.0

Sajan announced the latest release of Authoring Coach, their authoring memory tool. Authoring Coach is an authoring memory tool that provides live, interactive access to multilingual, approved source content from any Windows authoring application. The latest release of AC offers significant advancements to analytics with the addition of an ROI calculator, as well as improved search functionality due to the integration of TMate Search Technology, Sajan’s advanced matching engine optimized for the language translation industry. http://www.sajan.com

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Author-it Release Author-it 5.2 with Structured Authoring Support

Author-it announced Author-it 5.2, is now available and includes a number of new features including structured authoring. Author-it’s practical approach to structured authoring means this can be implemented gradually for both existing and new documentation as priorities and deadlines allow. If you are already on Author-it 5 and have current maintenance, you will be able to download 5.2 via the client portal My Author-it. If you are on version 4 you will need to work through the Upgrading to 5 process, complete acceptance testing and obtain a license file prior to commencing the upgrade. http://www.author-it.com

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