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Technology Articles
(October 2001)

XML Is About To Rock Your World
by Bill Daugherty

Envision a world in which you buy a new home appliance and it introduces itself to all of your other appliances and they figure out how to work together. Went you start your movie player it orders the lights to dim, the microwave to pop the popcorn and the telephone to hold all your calls until the movie is over.

This may sound like something out of a science fiction novel, but it is just around the corner thanks to an extensible markup language called XML. While this may sound like your t-shirt size, it is a powerful new addition to the e-world and it is going to rock your world good.

A relative of HTML, XML promises to become the common language for PCs, Macs and any other device that has a computer chip. The possibilities are endless.

This common language for all devices will make it possible to have networked cars and offices.

Automobiles that have all the components talking to one other and making adjustments based on the data received. Offices where all the machines, not just computer terminals, will be able to work together in a coordinated manner that will make the whole system many times more powerful and productive that the individual machines working alone.

XML and the Internet.

The Internet became what it is today because HTML was accepted as a universal language for displaying images and text. The impact of XML will first be seen in the great improvement it will bring to search results on search engines.

Today's search engines produce a lot of irrelevant results. That's because, to a search engine, a word or phrase is just a pattern of letters without meaning. XML will eliminate a lot of this "garbage" search results by labeling content more thoroughly.

This may all sound like something out of the distant future, but it will become our reality in the near future. The most amazing feats resulting from XML are those that we can't even imagine yet. The future will be an exciting time to live and XML will play a large role.


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