Author Topic: External Data Storage with XML and VLISP  (Read 25919 times)

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Columbia

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« on: January 05, 2004, 03:55:54 PM »
Alright guys/gals/robots/animals/vermin/rodents,

How many of you store data externally in a database file, a *.ini file, a *.txt file, a flat text *.dat file?

Do any of you know the beauty of XML structured data?  Do any of you care about the beauty of XML structured data?

If you answered yes to any or all of the above questions, then I may have something cool for you to look at and possibly use.  I have been working for a long time on a VLISP API for working with XML documents based on the MSXML DOM (Document Object Model) 3.0.  I am willing to share this thing free of charge to any who would like to use it.  I just want to know if y'all think it might be worth posting somewhere, anywhere.

I would be happy to answer any questions any of you might have about the API or XML in general.  I'm by no means an expert in XML, but I have done a lot of research with the DOM.

Se7en, you might remember me querying some a while back.  It's pretty much done and it's extensive.

daron

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2004, 04:52:10 PM »
I'd like to see that. I've been reading a book on xml and they covered it a bit at AU.

Mark

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #2 on: January 05, 2004, 04:55:10 PM »
>Do any of you know the beauty of XML structured data?
Yep, use it with Land Desktop, it is very nice. See http://www.landxml.org

How about some ideas of what it could be user for, for the curious.

>I just want to know if y'all think it might be
>worth posting somewhere, anywhere.
I would be willing to give up some server space for the project.
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deegeecees

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From XML author:
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2004, 04:55:28 PM »
"Title: XML based Configuration file
Description: This application has a class which handles all the code related to reading frmo and writing into an XML file. This XML file has a common structure.
I developed this so that my applications are not dependent on window's registry or INI files to store configuration information. For example, an application often requires to login into a database. For this it requires either DSN or Driver name, database server name, database name etc. Instead of hard coding this in the application, it is often read from either Window's registry or INI. But XML file is the perfect place to keep this information.
Code also shows how to use it to store configuration file as encrypted.
XML File is very easy to understand. Has only three elements (Configuration, Section and Item). So it is very easy for end-users to modify as well."

This is a DVB file I've downloaded and am looking into rewriting all my VBA stuff to use this method. Very time consuming task.

John Kaul (Se7en)

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #4 on: January 05, 2004, 04:56:19 PM »
I'm game. Sounds VERY cool. (I got a new job and I'm not using AutoCAD anymore, but I'm always willing to learn! --Thats why that email addy you had for me then, dosent work anymore.)
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deegeecees

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2004, 05:30:08 PM »
Can I have your old job?

John Kaul (Se7en)

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2004, 05:31:39 PM »
Yeah. Give 'em a call.
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Keith™

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #7 on: January 05, 2004, 05:45:18 PM »
You might rather be unemployed from what I understand.....
Proud provider of opinion and arrogance since November 22, 2003 at 09:35:31 am
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rugaroo

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2004, 06:25:25 PM »
Columbia -

Like Mark had said, I would also be will to allow for some disk space on my server.  Just let me know.

Rug
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John Kaul (Se7en)

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #9 on: January 05, 2004, 09:37:31 PM »
Columbia,

Does Dave know that you finished this? I seem to remeber him asking about XML and VL, a L..O..N..G time ago. I think he needs a good razzing.
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hendie

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #10 on: January 06, 2004, 03:37:58 AM »
Quote from: deegeecees
Can I have your old job?


I think that at the moment, Se7en would be quite prepared to give you his new[/b] job !"  :P

Columbia

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #11 on: January 06, 2004, 10:23:54 AM »
Someone asked for an example type of thingy...  well here goes nothing...

Say you wanted to store a set of standard layer settings outside of an AutoCAD drawing session so that you could use them over and over again.  And let's also say that you wanted to say you want them in a place where you can easliy edit them without having to mess with any source code of any kind.  All that equals an external data file.  Right?  Okay.

Now whether you use an *.ini or some other flat text format, is up to you.  But with XML and the MSXML DOM 3.0 interface it makes programming a little easier.  Mainly because the DOM (Document Object Model) gives the programmer a way to structure data in a logical and nested way (the XML format), as well as giving an Object Oriented way of getting to that data.

Alright here's what an *.ini format might look like for storing layer data...
Code: [Select]

[Layer]
;;; the properties list: color, linetype, lineweight, plottable
Walls=3,continuous,acByLwDefault,True
Furniture=2,PHANTOM,acByLwDefault,True

Now in an XML manner...
Code: [Select]

<Layers>
  <Layer Name="Walls">
    <Color>3</Color>
    <LineType>continuous</LineType>
    <LineWeight>acByLwDefault</LineWeight>
    <Plottable>True</Plottable>
  </Layer>
  <Layer Name="Furniture">
    <Color>2</Color>
    <LineType>PHANTOM</LineType>
    <LineWeight>acByLwDefault</LineWeight>
    <Plottable>True</Plottable>
  </Layer>
</Layers>


Now some might say, "Big deal they do the same thing!"  And they would be essentially right.  But (and there's always a but) using the XML format you can then share that data easily with other types of data storage systems.  A lot of other storage systems, like MS Access, Oracle, and SQL Server, have built in tools for translating XML data into a full service database.  That can't be said about other text formats, like *.ini.

Mark, Rug,
I have a compiled *.vlx for posting as well as a HTM header file that explains the functions within and how to use them.  Where should I send the files?

Se7en,
Yes, Dave does know.  In fact I just showed him the other day the API.  And he had sort of an attitude like, "Great!  Now I don't have to do it."   :D

John Kaul (Se7en)

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #12 on: January 06, 2004, 10:32:40 AM »
Quote from: Columbia
{snip} Se7en,
Yes, Dave does know. In fact I just showed him the other day the API. And he had sort of an attitude like, "Great! Now I don't have to do it." :D

HAHA! That sounds like Dave.

BTW, This is really interesting. I cant wait to see what you got on this.
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Mark

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #13 on: January 06, 2004, 10:33:20 AM »
Assuming their not to big, e-mail them to me and I will stick them somewhere everyone can see them.

mark.thomas@tampagov.net
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hendie

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External Data Storage with XML and VLISP
« Reply #14 on: January 06, 2004, 10:35:40 AM »
Quote from: Mark Thomas
...and I will stick them somewhere everyone can see them.


and Cue comment from Dent....