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Computer Science


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XML and JSON and its Uses on the Internet
and in Instructional Technology
For Students

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1 Introduction
Ten years ago, XML was the primary data interchange format. When it came on the scene, it was
a breath of fresh air and a vast improvement over the truly appalling SGML (Standard
Generalized Markup Language). It enabled people to do previously unthinkable things, like
exchange Microsoft Office documents across HTTP connections. With all
the dissatisfaction surrounding XML, it’s easy to forget just how crucial it was in the evolution of
the web in its capacity as a “Swiss Army Knife of the internet.” But it’s no secret that in the last
few years, a bold transformation has been afoot in the world of data interchange. The more
lightweight, bandwidth-non-intensive JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) has emerged not just as
an alternative to XML, but rather as a potential full-blown successor.
2 XML and Its Uses
XML stands for Extensible Markup Language. A markup language is used to annotate text or add
additional information. XML is the most common tool for data transmissions between all sorts of
applications. In the real world, computer systems and databases contain data in incompatible
formats. XML data is stored in plain text format. This provides a software- and hardware-
independent way of storing data. XML has a variety of uses for Web, e-business, and portable
applications. XML allows you to create interactive pages, allows the customer to customize those
pages, and makes creating e-commerce applications more intuitive. XML defines the type of
information contained in a document, making it easier to return useful results when searching the
Web. Markup technologies (i.e. XML and related technologies) can play an important role in
simplifying the development of educational applications and in making content reusable.
3 JSON and Its Uses

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JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) is a lightweight data-interchange format. It is easy for
humans to read and write. It is easy for machines to parse and generate. It is based on a subset of
the JavaScript Programming Language. JSON is a text format that is completely language
independent but uses conventions that are familiar to programmers of the C-family of languages.
Because of Jason easiness, it’s become one of the preferred data formats of choice for
programmers and major Web applications.
4 Comparison of XML and JSON
XML has its roots in marking-up document text and tends to shine very well in that space. JSON,
on the other hand, has its roots in programming language types and structures.
JSON is easy to read, or at least more so than XML.
JSON is light, as it can represent the same data in XML in fewer bytes, making network
transmissions and read/writes faster.
JSON is (mostly) native to JavaScript, which means you don't have to do
computationally-expensive XSL transformations to extract the data.
JSON is not as widespread as XML. Its tooling and language support still fall a bit short
of XML.
5 Use Case of XML
Currently, the implementation of Virtualization Technology (VT) (e.g., Xen, VMware, KVM,
etc.) is a proven solution that potentially provides maximum benefits and opportunities for
industry and research. However, teaching-learning processes in higher education and in
collaborative learning environments are just beginning to take advantage of VT. Virtualization
platforms make possible the execution of tests and software validation, and provide facilities for
the dimensioning of network services using Virtual Network Environments (VNE). In the

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