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Aliasing Industry Standard Data using Tags Disclosure Number: IPCOM000206055D
Publication Date: 2011-Apr-13
Document File: 3 page(s) / 41K

Publishing Venue

The Prior Art Database


There are industry standard formats for sharing data type information, XML and DDL (Data Definition Language) are two examples of these. These formats are large and complex and it could be advantageous to augment them with semantic information without modifying the original formats themselves. This article will discuss the use of tags to point to the original documents and to provide the semantic information.

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Aliasing Industry Standard Data using Tags

Disclosed is a method for adding semantic information to industry standard formats for sharing type information without modifying the original documents.

For example, an implementation of this method can be used to provide name aliasing of XML objects. Many industry standard XSDs (XML Schema Documents) have hundreds or thousands of objects with seemingly nonsensical or unintuitive names. This article will focus on providing an alias for root-level XSD objects such as type definitions and element declarations. XSD has annotation constructs for users to provide additional information however the intent is to provide additional information without modifying the original schema as it may be an industry standard schema or a third party schema that is read-only.

In order to allow the user to integrate additional data for describing or categorizing the model the tag must be able to annotate any part of the model. These annotations need to be serializable so they need to annotate the model when serialized, i.e. in this example, they need to annotate a valid XML document (See Figure 1).

Figure 1: Overview.

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The annotations can be further classified via qualifiers to provide more context. For example, the application can annotate a model object with the user-supplied "Apple" or can annotate it with "company:Apple" to provide further context. The application can define a set of qualifiers and if they are used in the annotations the application can make use of the added context. Use the convention "{qualifier}:{annotation}" when defining contextual annotations, but it is not mandatory. To follow along with this example a contextual annotation can be used to create a name alias for an XSD object (See Example 1).

Example 1:





Name aliasing via annotations.


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A tag object specifies the location to find the resource, a model element that specifies the path to the model object (using an XPath expression) and the annotation to associate with that model object (See Figure 2 for a schema defining the tag element). Multiple tags for a model object can be added as a space-separated list in the annotation element.

Figure 2: Schema describing tag element.
<? xml version = "1.0" encoding = "UTF-8" ?>
< xsd:schema xmlns:xsd = ""...