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Chapter Four. XML Conquers the World (An... > XML Applications and Your Site

XML Applications and Your Site

XML is the language on which Scalable Vector Graphics (www.w3.org/TR/SVG/) and Extensible Hypertext Markup Language (www.w3.org/TR/2002/REC-xhtml1-20020801/) are based. Illustrators who export their client's logo in the SVG format and web authors who compose their pages in XHTML are using XML, whether they know it or not.

The rules that are common to all forms of XML help these formats work together and with other kinds of XML—for instance, with XML stored in a database. An SVG graphic might be automatically altered in response to a visitor-generated search or continuously updated according to data delivered by an XML news feed.

The site of a local TV news channel could use this capability to display live Metro Traffic in all its congested glory. As one traffic jam cleared and another began, the news feed would relay this information to the server, where it would be formatted as user-readable text content in XHTML and as an updated traffic map in SVG. At the same time, the data might be syndicated in RDF or RSS for sharing with other news organizations or used by SOAP to help city officials pinpoint and respond to the problem.

Although based on XML, SVG graphics are easy to create in products like Adobe Illustrator 10 (www.adobe.com/products/illustrator/main.html). Like Flash vector graphics, images created in SVG can fill even the largest monitors while using little bandwidth. And SVG graphics, like other standard web page components, can be manipulated via ECMAScript and the DOM. Not to mention that SVG textual content is accessible by default, and can even be selected with the cursor no matter how it's been stretched or deformed.

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