Stephen White wrote:
>Just a brief side-track... but I'm seeing "XML" everywhere and I just don't
>click onto why everyone's talking about it.

My basic view is that XML is a big step up from 
CSV (comma separated value) ASCII files. Any 
place that I would have written out ASCII data, I 
would now choose XML instead. Obviously import, 
export, and data exchange are examples.

Moving a bit beyond that, I would consider XML as 
a native storage format for certain applications, 
but not apps that are heavily database-oriented.

Finally, RPC via XML is an interesting extension. 
I view this as ASCII-izing component interactions 
that would otherwise be binary (COM, CORBA). As 
"Pragmatic Programmer" explains, it's really nice 
to keep your data in a human-viewable format, 
when possible.

>I don't even grok why expat is 300k of C source to find <tags>, so that
>gives you an idea how little I know...

Me neither. I got frustrated trying to find a 
simple HTML/XML parser, so I wrote my own (in C++ 
at work). It was about 150 lines and did exactly 
what I needed it to do.

Kevin