Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

World Wide Web Consortium Publishes XForms 1.0 as a W3C Recommendation

14.10.2003


The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) announces the release of the XForms 1.0 Recommendation. XForms 1.0 is the foundation for next-generation Web- based forms, combining the ability to separate purpose, presentation, and results with the Extensible Markup Language (XML).

A W3C Recommendation is the equivalent of a Web standard, indicating that this W3C-developed specification is stable, contributes to Web interoperability, and has been reviewed by the W3C Membership, who favor its adoption by the industry.

After 10 Years, It’s Time to Upgrade Forms on the Web



When HTML forms were introduced to the Web in 1993, they provided a means to gather information and perform transactions. The structure of forms served the needs of many users at that time, as well as the devices used to access the Web.

Now, 10 years later, the original HTML form design is showing its limitations. Users now wish to access the Web through cell phones, handheld devices, and assistive technologies such as screen readers, and authors need more functionality based on their experience with HTML forms and non- Web-based forms technologies. Forms authors are looking to both minimize scripting and maximize reuse of form components, as well as cleanly separate the purpose, presentation and results of a form. And of course, companies which have made the move to XML are looking for ways to integrate forms into their business processes.

"W3C’s XForms gives authors more power and flexibility while improving the user experience," explained Steven Pemberton, Chair of the W3C XForms Working Group. "The XForms Working Group has provided a model that makes it easy for implementors to develop and reuse form components, integrate them into Web services, and deliver functionality to users and devices previously not possible."

XForms Cleanly Separates Purpose, Presentation, and Results

In contrast to HTML forms, in which functional and presentation markup are intertwined, XForms lets forms authors distinguish the descriptions of the purpose of the form; the presentation of the form, and how the results (the instance data) are written in XML.

By splitting traditional HTML forms into three parts—XForms model, instance data, and the XForms user interface—XForms cleanly separates presentation from content. This separation brings new advantages:

* Reuse: XForms modules can be reused independently of the information they collect

* Device independence: user interface controls are abstract—that is, their generic features are the only thing indicated—so they can easily be delivered to different devices with different capabilities

* Accessibility: separation of presentation from content leaves information more readily available for users of assistive technologies; in addition, the user interface controls encapsulate all relevant metadata such as labels, thereby enhancing accessibility of the application when using different modalities.

Practically speaking, XForms technologies make it possible to deliver the same form to a PDA, a cell phone, screen reader or conventional desktop machine—without loss of functionality for the end user.

XForms Aids the Author and Improves the User Experience

XForms allows authors to specify properties of, and relationships between, values being collected, for instance that a particular field must be an email address, that the total amount field is the sum of the individual line items, or that the credit card number isn’t required if payment is by cash. These are specified using simple properties such as saying a field is ’required’, or by giving the type of the field, rather than using the extensive scripting that was necessary in traditional HTML forms.

This means that the user experience is greatly improved, since the browser can always warn the user of any incorrectly filled fields before the form is submitted.

XForms Delivers the Power of XML to Online Forms

XML is at the core of the XForms model, and delivers key advantages to the XForms technology:

* Data received from an XForm is already strongly typed, well-formed, easy to validate, and process—in other words, it is XML.
* Using XML 1.0 for the description of results—called ’instance data’—ensures that the submitted data may be easily internationalized.
* XForms may be used to ’edit’ any XML document.
* Existing XML schemas from business processes may easily be used for the validation of instance data.
* XML schemas may be reused across XForms, helping keep sets of forms up to date and consistent.
* XForms can talk to Web services, finally integrating the user into the Web services process.

Moreover, XForms, while initially designed to be integrated into XHTML, may be adopted by any suitable markup language, such as Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG). XForms uses XML Events, another W3C technology being released today, to define XML-based declarative event handlers that cover common use cases, so that the majority of XForms documents can be statically analyzed, reducing the need for complicated scripting for event handlers.

XForms Already Widely Implemented

No W3C specification has been so widely implemented so early in its life cycle as XForms. Current implementations can deliver the same form to a variety of devices, including cell phones, PDAs, voice browsers, PCs, and even using instant messenger clients. Some large user communities are emerging, in particular the United Kingdom e-government interoperability framework says "current guidance is to use the XForms 1.0 standards as defined by W3C" (page 14 of this document).

XForms Basic, the mobile profile of XForms which allows XForms to be implemented natively on mobile devices, is currently a W3C Candidate Recommendation. It is expected to become a Recommendation when an mobile implementation passes the XForms test suite.

XForms Working Group Includes Industry Leaders

In the competitive field of forms technology, it’s almost unheard of to have so many leading participants working together on the development of a standardized technology to be used by all. The W3C XForms Working Group serves as the place where these technology and industry leaders meet to produce results that have immediate use on the Web today. The XForms Working Group includes W3C Members and invited experts from Adobe; CWI; Cardiff; Helsinki University of Technology; IBM; Mozquito Technologies; Novell; Oracle Corporation; Origo Services; PureEdge; SAP; Sun Microsystems; and x-port.net Ltd.

Marie-Claire Forgue | alfa
Further information:
http://www.w3.org/2003/10/xforms-pressrelease.html.en

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht NASA CubeSat to test miniaturized weather satellite technology
10.11.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht New approach uses light instead of robots to assemble electronic components
08.11.2017 | The Optical Society

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Heavy nitrogen molecules reveal planetary-scale tug-of-war

20.11.2017 | Earth Sciences

Taking a spin on plasma space tornadoes with NASA observations

20.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA detects solar flare pulses at Sun and Earth

17.11.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>