Java and XML

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XML has been the biggest buzzword on the Internet community for the past year. But how do you cut through all the hype and actually put it to work? Java revolutionized the programming world by providing a platform-independent programming language. XML takes the revolution a step further with a platform-independent language for interchanging data. Java and XML share many features that are ideal for building web-based enterprise applications, such as platform-independence, extensibility, reusability, and global ...

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Overview

XML has been the biggest buzzword on the Internet community for the past year. But how do you cut through all the hype and actually put it to work? Java revolutionized the programming world by providing a platform-independent programming language. XML takes the revolution a step further with a platform-independent language for interchanging data. Java and XML share many features that are ideal for building web-based enterprise applications, such as platform-independence, extensibility, reusability, and global language (Unicode) support, and both are based on industry standards. Together Java and XML allow enterprises to simplify and lower costs of information sharing and data exchange. Java and XML shows how to put the two together, building real-world applications in which both the code and the data are truly portable.This book covers:

  • The basics of XML
  • Using standard Java APIs to parse XML
  • Designing new document types using DTDs and Schemas
  • Writing programs that generate XML data
  • Transforming XML into different forms using XSL transformations (XSL/T)
  • XML-RPC
  • Using a web publishing framework like Apache-Cocoon
This is the first book to cover the most recent versions of the DOM specification (DOM 2), the SAX API (SAX 2) and Sun's Java API for XML.

Java revolutionized the programming world by providing a platform-independent programming language. XML takes the revolution a step further with a platform-independent language for interchanging data. Java and XML shows how to put the two together, building real-world applications in which both the code and the data are truly portable.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Java: portable code. XML: portable data. The two should go together like peas in a pod. But, as Java developers have discovered, it's not always as easy as advertised. There are solutions, however, and you'll find them in Java and XML, the industry's most systematic guide to integrating these two vital technologies.

Brett McLaughlin starts with a detailed grounding in XML for Java developers, followed by in-depth coverage of the two most widely-used Java tools for handling XML data: the Simple API for XML, and the Document Object Model (DOM). As McLaughlin has pointed out elsewhere, neither of these tools are perfect: SAX is fast but unfamiliar, and doesn't allow changes to underlying XML data. DOM is powerful but requires a far deeper understanding of XML. Still, if you use them judiciously, you can accomplish quite a bit — and McLaughlin shows you how, identifying challenges and pitfalls, and presenting realistic solutions.

Next, McLaughlin introduces the Java APIs for XML, which offers Java developers what they really want: a way to obtain a DOM document or SAX-compliant parser through a simple factory class, without worrying about the complexities of varying parser implementations. There's also an authoritative look at the new JDOM 1.0 spec — which McLaughlin co-wrote. JDOM is shaping up as a breakthrough: it enables Java developers to manipulate XML using familiar techniques and usage patterns, without worrying about strict tree models.

In the second half of the book, McLaughlin lays out specific solutions to the issues Java andXMLdevelopers face most often: using XML with remote procedure calls; storing configuration data inXML formats; XML-based B2B communication; and more. From start to finish, Java and XML is thorough, carefully written, replete with code, and extremely realistic.
Bill Camarda, bn.com editor

Booknews
"A guide for Java programmers, showing how to build real-world applications with XML featuring portable code and data. Early chapters focus on getting grounded in XML and core Java APIs for handling XML, and include coverage of the latest API, JDOM 1.0. Later chapters focus on specific XML topics such as Web publishing frameworks, XML for configurations, and XML schema. Includes a case study of creating inter- and intra-business communication channels using XML as a portable data format. The author specializes in building application infrastructure using Java."
--Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
From The Critics
Java and XML share features that are ideal for building Webbased enterprise applications including platform independence, extensibility, reusability, and global language support. Both are based on industry standards. Together Java and XML allow enterprises to simplify and lower their costs of information sharing and data exchange. In Java and XML, Brett McLaughlin draws upon his considerable expertise and experience to show the reader how to put these Java and XML together and thereby build realworld applications in which both the code and the data are truly portable. Very highly recommended for anyone developing software for electronic commerce, Java and XML covers the most recent version of DOM specification and the SAX API, and will become an indispensable, invaluable reference.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596000165
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/5/2000
  • Series: Java Series
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Pages: 495
  • Product dimensions: 7.04 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 1.18 (d)

Meet the Author

Brett McLaughlin is a bestselling and award-winning non-fiction author. His books on computer programming, home theater, and analysis and design have sold in excess of 100,000 copies. He has been writing, editing, and producing technical books for nearly a decade, and is as comfortable in front of a word processor as he is behind a guitar, chasing his two sons and his daughter around the house, or laughing at reruns of Arrested Development with his wife.

Brett spends most of his time these days on cognitive theory, codifying and expanding on the learning principles that shaped the Head First series into a bestselling phenomenon. He's curious about how humans best learn, why Star Wars was so formulaic and still so successful, and is adamant that a good video game is the most effective learning paradigm we have.

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Table of Contents

Preface;
Organization;
Who Should Read This Book?;
Software and Versions;
Conventions Used in This Book;
Comments and Questions;
Acknowledgments;
Chapter 1: Introduction;
1.1 What Is It?;
1.2 How Do I Use It?;
1.3 Why Should I Use It?;
1.4 What’s Next?;
Chapter 2: Creating XML;
2.1 An XML Document;
2.2 The Header;
2.3 The Content;
2.4 What’s Next?;
Chapter 3: Parsing XML;
3.1 Getting Prepared;
3.2 SAX Readers;
3.3 Content Handlers;
3.4 Error Handlers;
3.5 A Better Way to Load a Parser;
3.6 “Gotcha!”;
3.7 What’s Next?;
Chapter 4: Constraining XML;
4.1 Why Constrain XML Data?;
4.2 Document Type Definitions;
4.3 XML Schema;
4.4 What’s Next?;
Chapter 5: Validating XML;
5.1 Configuring the Parser;
5.2 Output of XML Validation;
5.3 The DTDHandler Interface;
5.4 “Gotcha!”;
5.5 What’s Next?;
Chapter 6: Transforming XML;
6.1 The Purpose;
6.2 The Components;
6.3 The Syntax;
6.4 What’s Next?;
Chapter 7: Traversing XML;
7.1 Getting the Output;
7.2 Getting the Input;
7.3 The Document Object Model (DOM);
7.4 “Gotcha!”;
7.5 What’s Next?;
Chapter 8: JDOM;
8.1 Parsers and the Java API for XML Parsing;
8.2 JDOM: Another API?;
8.3 Getting a Document;
8.4 Using a Document;
8.5 Outputting a Document;
8.6 What’s Next?;
Chapter 9: Web Publishing Frameworks;
9.1 Selecting a Framework;
9.2 Installation;
9.3 Using a Publishing Framework;
9.4 XSP;
9.5 Cocoon 2.0 and Beyond;
9.6 What’s Next?;
Chapter 10: XML-RPC;
10.1 RPC Versus RMI;
10.2 Saying Hello;
10.3 Putting the Load on the Server;
10.4 The Real World;
10.5 What’s Next?;
Chapter 11: XML for Configurations;
11.1 EJB Deployment Descriptors;
11.2 Creating an XML Configuration File;
11.3 Reading an XML Configuration File;
11.4 The Real World;
11.5 What’s Next?;
Chapter 12: Creating XML with Java;
12.1 Loading the Data;
12.2 Modifying the Data;
12.3 XML from Scratch;
12.4 The Real World;
12.5 What’s Next?;
Chapter 13: Business-to-Business;
13.1 The Foobar Public Library;
13.2 mytechbooks.com;
13.3 Push Versus Pull;
13.4 The Real World;
13.5 What’s Next?;
Chapter 14: XML Schema;
14.1 To DTD or Not To DTD;
14.2 Java Parallels;
14.3 What’s Next?;
API Reference;
SAX 2.0;
DOM Level 2;
JAXP 1.0;
JDOM 1.0;
SAX 2.0 Features and Properties;
Core Features;
Core Properties;
Colophon;

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Preface

XML, XML, XML, XML. You can see it on hats and t-shirts, read about it on the cover of every technical magazine on the planet, and hear it on the radio or the occasional Gregorian chant album .... well, maybe it hasn't gone quite that far yet, but don't be surprised if it does. XML, the Extensible Markup Language, has seemed to take over every aspect of technical life, particularly in the Java community. An application is no longer considered an enterprise-level product if XML isn't being used somewhere. Legacy systems are being accessed at a rate never before seen, and companies are saving millions and even billions of dollars on system integration, all because of three little letters. Java developers wake up with fever sweats wondering how they are going to absorb yet another technology, and the task seems even more daunting when embarked upon; the road to XML mastery is lined with acronyms: XML, XSL, XPath, RDF, XML Schema, DTD, PI, XSLT, XSP, JAXP, SAX, DOM, and more. And there isn't a development manager in the world that doesn't want their team learning about XML today!

When XML became a formal specification at the World Wide Web Consortium in early 1998, relatively few were running in the streets claiming that the biggest thing since Java itself (arguably bigger!) had just made its way onto the technology stage. Barely two years later, XML and a barrage of related technologies for manipulating and constraining XML have become the mainstay of data representation for Java systems. XML promises to bring to a data format what Java brought to a programming language: complete portability. In fact, it is only with XML that the promise of Java is realized;Java's portability has been seriously compromised as proprietary data formats have been used for years, enabling a system to run on multiple systems, but not across businesses in a standardized way. XML promises to fill this gap in complete interoperability for Java programs by removing these proprietary data formats and allowing systems to communicate using a standard means of data representation. This books is a book about XML, but is geared specifically at Java developers. While both XML and Java are powerful tools in their own right, it is their marriage that this book is concerned with, and where the true power of XML lies. We will cover the various XML vocabularies, look at creating, constraining, and transforming XML, and examine all of the APIs for handling XML from Java code. Additionally, we cover the hot topics that have made XML such a popular solution for dynamic content, messaging, e-business, and data stores. Through it all, we take a very narrow view: that of the developer who has to put these tools to work. A candid look at the tools XML provides is taken, and if something is not useful (even if it is popular!) we will address it and move on. If a particular facet of XML is a hidden gem, we will extract the value of the item and put it to use. This book is meant to serve as a handbook to help you, and is neither a reference nor a book geared towards marketing XML.

Finally, the back half of this book is filled with working, practical code. Although available for download, the purpose of this code is to walk you through creating several XML applications, and you are encouraged to follow along with the examples rather than skimming the code. We introduce a new API for manipulating XML from Java as well, and complete coverage and examples are included. This book is for you, the Java developer, and is about the real world, not a theoretical or fanciful flight through what is "cool" in the industry; We abandon buzz-words when possible, and define them clearly when not. All of the code and concepts within this book has been entered by hand into an editor, prodded and tested, and are intended to aid you in your road to mastering Java and XML.

Organization

This book is structured in a very particular way: the first half of the book (Chapters 1 through 7) focus on getting you grounded in XML and the core Java APIs for handling XML. Although these chapters are not glamorous, they should be read through in order, and at least skimmed even if you are familiar with XML. We cover the basics, from creating XML to transforming it. Chapter 8 serves as a halfway point in the book, covering an exciting new API for handling XML within Java, JDOM. This chapter is a must-read, as the API is being publicly released as this book goes to production, and this is the reference for JDOM 1.0 (as I wrote the API with Jason Hunter specifically for solving problems in using Java and XML!). The remainder of the book, Chapters 9 through 14, focus on specific XML topics that continually are brought up at conferences and tutorials I am involved with, and seek to get you neck-deep in using XML in your applications, now! Finally, there are two appendices to wrap up the book. The summary of this content is as follows:

Chapter 1, Introduction

We will look at what all the hype is about, examine the XML alphabet soup, and spend time discussing why XML is so important to the present and future of enterprise development.

Chapter 2, Creating XML

We start looking at XML by building an XML document from the ground up. Examination of the major XML constructs, such as elements, attributes, entities, and processing instructions is included.

Chapter 3, Parsing XML

The Simple API for XML (SAX), our first Java API for handling XML, is introduced and covered in this chapter. The parsing lifecycle is detailed, and the events that can be caught by SAX and used by developers are demonstrated.

Chapter 4, Constraining XML

In this chapter we look at the two ways to impose constraints on XML documents, Document Type Definitions and XML Schema. We will dissect the differences and analyze when one should be used over the other.

Chapter 5, Validating XML

Complementing Chapter 4, this looks at how to use the SAX skills previously learned to enforce validation constraints, as well as how to react when constraints are not met by XML documents.

Chapter 6, Transforming XML

In this chapter the Extensible Stylesheet Language and the other critical components for transforming XML from one format into another are introduced. We cover the various methods available for converting XML into other formats, and look at using formatting objects to convert XML into binary formats.

Chapter 7, Traversing XML

Continuing to look at transforming XML documents, we discuss XSL transformation processors and how they can be used to convert XML into other formats. We also examine the Document Object Model (DOM) and how it can be used for handling XML data.

Chapter 8, JDOM

We begin by looking at the Java API for XML Parsing (JAXP), and discuss the importance of vendor-independence when using XML. I then introduce the JDOM API, discuss the motivation behind its development, and detail its use, comparing it to SAX and DOM.

Chapter 9, Web-Publishing Frameworks

This chapter looks at what a web-publishing framework is, why it matters to you, and how to choose a good one. We then cover the Apache Cocoon frame work, taking an in-depth look at its feature set and how it can be used to server highly-dynamic content over the Web.

Chapter 10, XML-RPC

In this chapter we cover Remote Procedure Calls (RPC), its relevance in distributed computing as compared to RMI, and how XML makes RPC a viable solution for some problems. We then look at using XML-RPC Java libraries and building XML-RPC clients and servers.

Chapter 11, XML for Configurations

In this chapter we look at using configuration data in an XML format, and why that format is so important to cross-platform applications, particularly as it relates to distributed systems.

Chapter 12, Creating XML with Java

Although covered in part in other chapters, here we look at the process of generating and mutating XML from Java, how to perform these modifications from server-side components such as Java servlets, and outline concerns when mutating XML.

Chapter 13, Business-to-Business

This chapter details a "case-study" of creating inter- and intra-business communication channels using XML as a portable data format. Using multiple languages, we build several application components for different companies that all interact with each other using XML.

Chapter 14, XML Schema

We revisit XML Schema here, looking at why the XML Schema specification has garnered so much attention, how reality measures up to the promise of the XML Schema concept, and examining why Java and XML Schema are such complementary technologies.

Appendix A, API Reference

This details all the classes, interfaces, and methods available for use in the SAX, DOM, JAXP, and JDOM APIs.

Appendix B, SAX 2.0 Features and Properties

This details the features and properties available to SAX 2.0 parser implementations.

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Customer Reviews

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 11, 2007

    A reviewer

    Are you developing with Java and need to use XML? If you are, then this book is for you. Authors Brett McLaughlin and Justin Edelson, have done an outstanding job of writing a book that that cuts through all of the hype about XML and put it to work. McLaughlin and Justin Edelson, begin with the basics of XML. Then, the authors cover three ways of defining the structure of XML documents. Next, they introduce the Simple API for XML (SAX). They also cover less-used, but still powerful items in the API. The authors continue by covering DOM basics. Then, they discuss the various Level 2 and Level 3 DOM modules like Traversal, Range, Events, Style, HTML, Load and Save, and Validation. Next, the authors examine the Java API for XML Processing. In addition, they also show you how to SAX and how it compares to both SAX and DOM. They continue by examining JDOM, a Java-specific object model API. Then, the authors examine another Java-specific object model API, dom4j. Next, they cover JAXB 1.0 and 2.0, as well as the general basics of data binding. Furthermore, the authors show you how to syndicate content. They continue by looking at a variety of techniques for using XML in the presentation, or visual portion of web applications. Finally, the authors provide some brief overview of technologies not covered in depth in this book. This most excellent book shows you how to use the APIs, tools, and tricks of XML to build real world applications. Perhaps more importantly, this book offers a new approach to managing information that touches everything from configuration files to web sites.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2000

    the only book around

    and therfore quite usefull. most parts are quite ok but the chapter on JDOM ends up telling how you how great and superior it is and one tends to assume that this is because of the fact that the author participated in the specification.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2000

    Java and Xml

    Java is an object oriented programming, it is quite similar with C programming, where I am learning in school. Xml is about making your own tags.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2013

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