Topic 10 XML Workflows

XML stands for eXtensible Markup Language. The tags used to mark up instructions are not fixed they have the ability to be extended.   Examples were presented to reflect a language developed for chemical research.

Unfortunately have not been able to access the demonstration of the RMIT xml based publishing workflow.  

Taken from the University of Wisconsin XML Training Centre to clarify the difference between HTML and XML in practice:

  • XML is all about structure. The markup in XML defines what the data represents (i.e. <BookTitle>The Catcher in the Rye</BookTitle>). HTML, on the other hand, is made for publications. Hence, in HTML, it makes sense to order information by where and how it will appear on the screen. In XML, however, the structure of the information is what’s most important. The order of the information is unimportant – it can be displayed in whatever order you want. The important thing is that each piece of data is contained in markup that describes what that data really represents. The structure can be maintained much more easily in XML because of the fact that you can create your own tags.
  • Think of a book you’ve read recently. The chapter titles were most likely in bold print. We come to rely on these sorts of conventions to give us a sense of the structure of the document. When you’re dealing with a web page, you have to make the structure evident to the reader to help them deal with the information. By using XML, you can easily keep track of information like chapter titles because they will all be contained in markup designating what they are (i.e. <ChapterTitle>Ch. 1 – The Beginning</ChapterTitle>). You can then choose to display that information in whatever way will make it easiest for your reader.

That’s what XML is all about: structure.

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