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Parsing XML

To use XML documents, you must be able to understand the "meaning" contained in them, to manipulate that logical content, and to find your way around the logical structure of XML documents. This chapter introduces you to some of the concepts relevant to these fundamental mechanisms.

As you saw when you created an XML document in Chapter 10, "Introducing XML," and Chapter 11, "Creating XML Files for Use," an XML document is, at one level, simply a text document. More precisely, an XML file is a succession of characters, which have no intrinsic meaning—at least as far as a computer is concerned. A text editor can create or display an XML file, but only as a series of characters. An ordinary text editor knows nothing of the logical structure contained within the sequence of characters contained in the XML document.


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