XML alternatives [was Re: [Beowulf] What services do you run on your cluster nodes?]

Joe Landman landman at scalableinformatics.com
Thu Sep 25 16:11:14 PDT 2008

Tod Hagan wrote:
> On Thu, 2008-09-25 at 15:20 -0400, Robert G. Brown wrote:
>> ...XML...The fundamental problem is (as Don said as well) that as far as I know
>> there ARE NO really good solutions to the problem of the representation,
>> encapsulation, and transmission of hierarchical data structures in a
>> portable and efficient way.  If you know of one, please correct me (and
>> that isn't a sarcastic request but a serious one).
> I don't know if you consider them 'good solutions', but two alternatives
> to XML are YAML and JSON:

YAML is nice until you accidentally change indentation.  Then the game 
is over.  Having bolluxed up many fortran codes in my (distant past), I 
have to say "just say no" to things *requiring* indentation.  In YAML's 
case, it suffers from the same problem with Python (yeah, I am gonna get 
some nasty dirty emails now).  Structure by indentation is IMO *evil*. 
I have heard that GvR actually agrees with this, though that is 3rd 
order hearsay.

JSON is a little more intelligent.  Easier to parse.

I guess, as a person who uses Perl quite a bit, I have to smile when I 
hear about some folks in some other language somewhere forming a team to 
write a parser or validator for some XML they are banging their heads 
on.  I am spoiled by Perl's (extraordinarily) powerful tools for stuff 
like this.

Darn ... I hope I didn't just light off a language war ... (ducks, 
covers, and runs)

Joseph Landman, Ph.D
Founder and CEO
Scalable Informatics LLC,
email: landman at scalableinformatics.com
web  : http://www.scalableinformatics.com
phone: +1 734 786 8423 x121
fax  : +1 866 888 3112
cell : +1 734 612 4615

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