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Re: [seul-edu] Re: Student Information Standard (EduML)

On Sun, 22 Oct 2000, Bruno Vernier wrote:
> > > 1. There are only 2 meta-standards worth discussing for medium to large 
> > > applications: SQL and XML.  Both of them are becoming extremely important 
> > 
> > I have only one thing to say. I don't know any educative piece
> > of software written in SQL or XML. 
> > 
> > SQL/XML seems hard for GPL'ed projects, specially for 
> > education. 
> > SQL/XML seems utopia for commercial educative projects.
> 1. I agree with you:  the commercial educational software I have to work with
> does not currently use either XML nor SQL, historically prefering proprietary
> database standards instead.


> 2. I agree with you: SQL/XML is hard for GPL or any kind of programming.
> This is why we still have no working EDUML-compliant software to show, nor
> any released commercial IMS-compliant software (to my knowledge) after
> 2 years of talk.  XML is very young - few programmers really know it,
> and there is a very high demand for people who know SQL (jobs for SQL 
> programmers now routinely offer 6 digit salaries in US dollars  !!!)

I'd say XML is not so young. And banks and great corps use it. But
XML is very formal for medium-small companies/projects/minds.

> 4. I partially agree (and therefore partially disagree) with the implied
> conclusion that all of this is silly talk:  Even if nothing comes of it, it
> is good to know what we are dealing with here.  I easily predict that the
> topic of standard data format in education will come up over and over again
> on this and many other discussion lists.  Perhaps we should save everyone
> time and collect our current wisdom together as a FAQ so that future
> installments will have a better chance of bringing "new" elements to the
> picture.

I like utopia. And I like high level data types (I'm a pythoneer,
I still don't know Zope, yet ). And XML is interesting, but
I've seen lots of discussions about XML and choosing keys for
DTD's ... and it's not nice. XML in GPL projects can be used
as a standard way of communication. You write your GPL project,
with your data in your propietary format and if your project
gets big/useful, then you have conversors to export your
data. I think Glade suffered this process. I mean that
it's a bad idea to speak XML from day 1 in a GPL project.
XML is nice for day 234.

> 5. Having mostly agreed with you, nonetheless, my job includes integrating
> all the educational data in my work environment.  Given I have to do that,
> and given I am perhaps not the only one with that (even self-imposed)
> directive, I think there might something productive that can come of such
> silly talk.

My (Internet) experience says three things:
- the more you talk the less you work
- the more you talk the more you learn
- the more you talk the better your english is

Silly talks end by getting a lot of experience and points of views
that will be used for different targets than the stuff that
began the discussion.

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