Ponderings of a kind

This is my own personal blog, each article is an XML document and the code powering it is hand cranked in XQuery and XSLT. It is fairly simple and has evolved only as I have needed additional functionality. I plan to Open Source the code once it is a bit more mature, however if you would like a copy in the meantime drop me a line.

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XML Prague 2009

and the launch of

I attended the XML Prague conference again this year; it was great to go back again after it took a break last year. Personally, I think this was probably the best one yet, with excellent content all round.

Me with EXQuery Poster @ XMLPrague

This is the third time I have attended, but it was the first time that I have had any input into the conference outside of my involvement in eXist.

I presented a poster on EXQuery at the conference, a project I have had in mind for some time for creating standards for XQuery Application Development. I registered for this just one month before the conference! This meant an immense rush to get the EXQuery website content up to scratch as well as designing my poster, slide and handouts. However my efforts came to fruition, as whilst the poster itself received little attention, my known attendance regarding EXQuery facilitated many useful conversations with great members of the XML community; I was even able to recruit Priscilla and Florent to participate in the EXQuery core team! All of the feedback I received from everyone I spoke to was overwhelmingly positive and encouraging :-)

Other highlights from the conference for me included -

Michael Kay on XML Schema 1.1.

At last we can now do all the things with XML Schema that we need to without having to resort to a two step validation approach with XML Schema as the first step and some other constraint processing mechanism as the second step; personally I have been using XQuery here, but it was interesting to hear from Michael that a lot of people have been using XSLT for this.

Jeni Tenison on XSpec

My current employer takes testing very seriously (as one should of course), Test Driven Development is the mandated software development approach there. With that in mind it was very interesting to see existing testing methodologies, in this case Behaviour Driven Development, being bought to bare on XSLT in the form of XSpec. This is certainly something I will be introducing on any future projects with complex XSLT requirements.

Priscilla Walmsley on FunctX

I was pleasantly surprised to learn she had a custom approach and model for documenting her FunctX functions. I had been previously considering the best way to document any functions that are created for the EXQuery function libraries and Priscilla seems to already have an excellent approach to this. Hopefully a lot of the lessons learnt here can be reused and applied to EXQuery function libraries.

Norman Walsh on XProc

I saw Normans XProc presentation at XML Prague 2007 and knew that they were onto a good thing, I meant to go away and attempt an implementation atop eXist but shamefully never got around to it. This years XProc presentation revived all of the good feelings that it had previously invoked in me in 2007. I really do believe that this is an excellent technology and that for any XML Application Server (e.g. eXist) it really is the glue needed to pull applications together.

Robin Berjon on SVG

I used to naively think that SVG was just another graphics format. This presentation completely blew me away. You can do WHAT with SVG now!!! Goodbye browser plugins, hello accessible web :-)

Michael Kays beard!

In case you hadnt heard - its missing... presumed dead ;-)

Adam Retter posted on Monday, 30th March 2009 at 22.51 (GMT+01:00)
Updated: Wednesday, 1st 2009 at April 20.16 (GMT+01:00)

tags: XML PragueEXQueryXQueryXML SchemaXSLTXSpecFunctXXProc

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