THOMAS PASSIN tpassin@idsonline.com
Mon, 24 Apr 2000 20:15:38 -0400

Christian Tismer asked -
> Has somebody looked into XMLAuthority? I'd really like to
> know what their native data abstraction is. They seem to
> be very flexible in reading and writing different formats.
> Perhaps the *right* way to do it hides somewhere in their
> implementation?

I've played with it a little, we have it at work.  If you haven't tried it
out, it has its own data model - don't know exactly what it is.  You can
design a schema - a data structure - semi-graphically, then you can have the
tool save it to a file in a number of formats.  Two of the formats are DTDs
and (an older version of) XML-schemas.  It can read a lot of file formats
and deduce a schema.  It understands DTDs very well, including external
subsets and parameter entities.

It really seems to be oriented towards DTD type things, even though you can
output XML-schemas.  The content models look like DTD-type content models,
and you can specify them using pretty nearly the usual DTD syntax.  I don't
recall seeing a lot of support for much of the XML-schema things that are
not possible in DTDs, especially for creating new schemas.  This will
probably change, though, as the schema spec stabilizes.

It's a nice tool, though, especially for longer schemas.  It doesn't look so
useful, though, for parameterizing schemas.  It understands them, and will
let you create your own parameter entities.  But it expands everything when
you import the DTD (or whatever) so you can't find the module and parameters
in the main graphical views.

They say they will be supporting the newer versions of the XML-Schema draft.

Tom Passin