Databases get a grip on XML

The next iteration of the SQL standard was supposed to arrive in 2003. But SQL standardization has always been a glacially slow process, so nobody should be surprised that SQL:2003 -- now known as SQL:200n -- isn't ready yet. Even so, 2003 was a year in which XML-oriented data management, one of the areas addressed by the forthcoming standard, showed up on more and more developers' radar screens. [Full story at (part of 2003 Technology of the Year)]
Although I thought XML support in databases was a hot 2003 topic, Edd Dumbill felt otherwise:

Though there's a reasonable amount of interest in the W3C XML Query language, there's not much to say about XML and databases. It doesn't seem to me that the integration of XML with relational databases has taken off in the way we once thought it might. [Edd Dumbill: The changing face of XML]

I may be guilty of a bit of wishful thinking. And yet, when I consider what Oracle, OpenLink Software, Sleepycat, and others are up to, I can't help but feel that we've turned the corner -- though the road ahead is still, admittedly, very long. My July feature on SQL/XML hybridization spelled out the argument in more detail.

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