XML.org opens schema registry
14:32, 20 Jun 2000 UTC | Eric van der Vlist

OASIS have announced public access to the XML.org registry, an open repository for XML and SGML DTDs and schemas designed as a first step "for deploying interoperable XML repositories across the Web".

Following the draft specification published in December 99, this registry is intended to offer a "vendor-neutral forum for developers and standards bodies to publicly submit, publish and exchange XML specifications and vocabularies".

Jon Bosak said that:

The XML.org Registry belongs to the XML community at large, this first phase is a call for participation, an opportunity to experience the potential of an open XML registry and an invitation to the community to help shape its evolving functionality.

Laura Walker, Executive Director of OASIS, explained that the registry is not meant to be a single, exclusive source for XML schemas, but "rather, it is designed to serve as a model for an extensible network of XML registries and repositories distributed across the Internet"--and, indeed, within large private networks. This places it in contrast to Microsoft's Biztalk.org, which takes a more centralized approach to schema storage.

This approach from OASIS defuses somewhat the bizarre rush by schema creators to have their schemas "blessed" by inclusion in the XML.org and BizTalk registries, and shifts the focus from the Microsoft vs. OASIS angle to the problem of vocabulary visbility.

It is very important that users can find XML schemas in their area of work with ease, in order to promote interoperability and reuse. This is currently definitely not the case, with many groups re-engineering work done by others, but the hope must be that the XML.org registry grows into this role.

(Additional reporting by Edd Dumbill).

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