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Java and XML by Brett McLaughlin

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The Real World

As we continue through our topical discussions, the line between a realistic use of XML and our examples is becoming thinner. Our XML-RPC server in this chapter is close to being ready for production use; it has a flexible configuration file format, it registers handlers dynamically, and maintains a lightweight structure for handling XML-RPC requests. However, the use of XML for pure data, as discussed in this chapter, is as new an idea as most of our other XML topics. As with RMI versus RPC, it is possible to overuse the technology. In this section, we compare XML as a data storage medium with other more traditional formats, discussing when one format is preferable over the other, as well as comparing JDOM with other solutions for accessing our underlying XML data.

XML Versus Databases

Depending on who you ask, databases (and, in particular, relational databases) are either here, never to be replaced, or are any minute going to literally disappear off the face of the planet in favor of object-oriented databases and XML data stores. As is usually the case, the reality of the situation is somewhere in the middle of these two extremes. Ten years ago, anyone questioning the longevity of a relational database management system (RDBMS) would have been laughed at. Five years ago, this possibility might have been acknowledged with the advent of the object-oriented database management system (OODBMS), but still received with skepticism and some chuckles. However, the last ...

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