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XML design principles


XML design problems

Product group

I've had tremendous trouble trying to figure out how to express Product groups in generic markup. The idea is that all products belong to a product group and that product groups can belong to other product groups. tomatoes are vegeatables, which are food etc.

The idea is to allow the defining of different relationships between product groups, for the uses of describing Product substitutions and sevice cycles and other stuff we haven't even thought of yet.

I was aiming at a generic product group-element to make the processing software (Instructional capital) simpler, but I can't get it to work. We could have an generic product group-element that encapsulates group specific data in a more specific element like:

<product_group id=??><food_group id=??>...</food_group></product_group>
<product_group id=??><clothing_group id=??>...</clothing_group></product_group>
start simple. define a relationship between a set of objects with a group markup tag, e.g.: <group name="bread"> <fu/> <bar/> </group> establishes a named relationship betwen <fu/> and <bar/>. let the group tag have anything inside it, including text. treat it as markup.

Using "ANY"-constraint (can contain any element... or is it even #PCDATA??) can be kind of hazardous for software.. but maybe we just add these specific groups so that each element can contain just one of the available subgroups for this subgroup.

But this would not allow to define variable relationships required to give everyone their say about product substitution and service cycle...

I don't know... We need XML-gurus

do you want to markup text? or do you want to define structure? or both?
DTD syntax is troublesome and difficult to master. the newer xml schema is itself xml, and is capable of a whole lot more... it could make expression of your product group easier.
let's start it off with a small collection of schemas, say { resource.xsd, person.xsd, a product.xsd, service.xsd }.

Sourceforge entry needs a LOT more links and information. Like at least a real link to Consumerium!