Re: What is the logic of storing XML in a Database?

From: Bernard Peek <>
Date: 30 Mar 2007 15:27:12 GMT
Message-ID: <>

On 2007-03-30, Marshall <> wrote:
> On Mar 30, 6:33 am, "Daniel" <> wrote:
>> On Mar 29, 11:58 am, "Marshall" <> wrote:
>> The standards are not currently in place to have ubiquitous exhange of
>> binary data.
> That is a fair point. However I don't buy the rest of it. Pushing
> binary data was a solved problem thirty years ago. There was
> no standard for arbitrarily structured binary data, and it turns
> out that arbitrarily structured data is really useful. It so happens
> that the first widely adopted standard for arbitrarily structured
> data was XML. That's the only idea of value that I have identified
> so far in XML. It's a very good one, but the large number
> of bad design choices (such as using a text representation,)
> the poor efficiency (which in part results from using a text
> representation) and the unnecessary complexity make it
> otherwise unattractive.

I can see why a text format was adopted, I'm sure that there were lots of people clinging to the idea that the data ought to be editable in vi if necessary. I happen to think that editing data files by hand is not a smart thing to do, because it encourages people to fix symptoms instead of causes.

Thankfully XML developed sufficient complexity to effectively discourage that. A naive user who looks at XML for the first time is going to be baffled. That's not in itself a good thing, but it has some benefits.

The efficiency argument I've already covered, but I should add that it's normal for XML files to be compressed, which effectively turns it into an efficient binary format.

In search of cognoscenti
Received on Fri Mar 30 2007 - 17:27:12 CEST

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