A universal canvas requires a universal way to represent data. Other solutions are conceivable, but let's accept for now that XML is a reasonable one, and that it's here to stay. How does XML become Play-doh? The first answer, for me, was Perl with its XML::Parser module. Then came XSLT (XSL Transformation), which traded away procedural idioms to gain declarative transformational power. Then came Python with its libxml/libxslt modules, which married the procedural and declarative styles in a highly interactive way. That's been my weapon of choice lately, but now there's a new contender: E4X (ECMAScript for XML).
In an earlier item, I mentioned Ruby and PHP variations on this theme. Here are some others:
So there's plenty of interest in the idea. As I mentioned the other day, I hope it gets expressed in ways that anticipate a common approach to serializing XML objects, and connecting to XML-aware databases.
Former URL: http://weblog.infoworld.com/udell/2004/10/13.html#a1094