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Subject: Re: Requirements for a Web-Based XML Yellow Pages
From: James Tauber <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:General discussion of Extensible Markup Language <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 17 Mar 1999 08:24:50 +0800
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-----Original Message-----
From: Roger L. Costello <[log in to unmask]>
To: [log in to unmask] <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Wednesday, 17 March 1999 12:25
Subject: Requirements for a Web-Based XML Yellow Pages


>Here's my list of requirements for a Web-based XML Yellow Pages.
>Anybody have other requirements?  Anybody up to the challenge of
>implementing it?
>
>** XML Yellow Pages Web Site Requirements **
>
>(1) Can be accessed via a browser (eyeballs access).
>
>(2) Can be programmatically accessed via an HTTP request (machine
>access).  The Web site must publish an HTTP API (that is, the URL and
>the legal query parameters).
>
>Example:
><http://www.xmlyellowpages.com?category=literature&subcategory=shakespeare>


Why not use the path rather than queries. That way the site has the option
of generating on the fly *or* having the xml already on the server's file
system:

http://www.xmlyellowpages.com/cat/literature/shakespeare/

As SCHEMA.NET[1] and XMLSOFTWARE[2] develop, there will probably be the need
for multiple-level categorisations and I would plan on doing the above. This
keeps implemention opaque to the user.

In fact (and I've thought about doing this on the two sites I've mentioned),
you could have

http://www.xmlyellowpages.com/html-cat/literature/shakespeare/
http://www.xmlyellowpages.com/xml-cat/literature/shakespeare/

If you wanted an html (for human readability on current browsers) and an xml
version.

Of course, if you wanted more complex queries, you would need to use a query
string, but the above seems the best thing for the hierarchical
organisation.

Actually, it would be nice to have some sort of "XQL" query similar to the
XSL search I was testing out for XMLSOFTWARE*

[* my apologies for that test no longer being on the site. it'll be put back
at some stage]

>would result in returning (to the invoking program) an XML document
>containing the URLs (and perhaps the company name, POC, email, etc) to
>Guy Murphy's Shakespeare XML documents.
>
>Issue: what should be the strucutre of the XML document that is
>returned?


Both SCHEMA.NET and XMLSOFTWARE are generated from an xml document. It would
be relatively easy for me to return the actual XML underlying the current
visual presentation. For the purposes you are talking about, something using
RDF would make a lot of sense as the description of documents is exactly
what RDF is designed for.

>Issue: the Web site should also provide an API to allow a program to
>retrieve a list of legal query parameters and their meanings.  What
>should be the format of this list?


If something like RDF is used, I would imagine that it's the schema that
would tell you exactly this.

I'm willing to test out some of the concepts on my sites.

James

[1] http://www.schema.net/
[2] http://www.xmlsoftware.com/

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