The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has published eight new XML standards to help improve the querying, transformation and accessing of XML data and documents.
Primary specifications include 'XML Query 1.0', 'XSL Transformations 2.0', and 'XML Path Language 2.0'.
The W3C claimed that the standards will play a "significant role" in enterprise computing by connecting databases with the internet.
XML Query 1.0 allows data mining of everything from memos and web service messages to multi-terabyte relational databases.
XSL Transformations 2.0 adds "significant" functionality to the already widely deployed XSLT 1.0, which enables the transformation and styled presentation of XML documents.
Both specifications rely on XML Path 2.0, which has also been enhanced from its previous version. XML Query (XQuery) describes a database query language for XML data.
"XQuery will serve as a unifying interface for access to XML data, much as SQL has done for relational data," said Don Chamberlin, a Fellow at IBM's Almaden Research Center, and co-inventor of the original SQL Query language and one of the co-editors of XQuery 1.0.
"Since virtually any kind of information can be represented using XML, I expect XQuery to play a central role in unifying information from many different sources.
"Companies across a wide range of industries can use XQuery to pull together structured and semi-structured information for processing in a unified way."
Members of the W3C's XSL Working Group and XML Query Working Group, which created the specifications, have addressed thousands of comments from implemen ters and the public to ensure that the specifications meet the needs of diverse communities.
"These specifications provide a much needed bridge between two worlds: documents with complex but irregular internal structure on the one hand; and databases and simple data with atomic values on the other," said Michael Sperberg-McQueen, one of the editors of the original XML 1.0 specification.
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