The 10 best of the newest content in the XML zone

Which articles and tutorials written in 2009 are XML developers reading?

Every month, we publish lists of the Top 10 articles and tutorials—a dependable list of the most-read pieces in the XML zone. Some articles and tutorials seem to be on that list almost every month, a tribute to their quality and ability to meet the needs of developers. What about the ones that just missed getting on that list? What about the new articles that are climbing their way up the ranks but haven't made it (yet)? As 2009 draws to a close, we decided to reveal the most popular articles and tutorials we published this year. (And, yes, we do know the title says 10 but we actually list more.)


Dan Hattenberger (, Content Editor, IBM

Photo of Dan HattenbergerDan Hattenberger is currently the Content editor for the XML zone. In previous jobs in a long IBM career, Dan has programming experience developing process control systems, applications, and databases. He has worked with IBM Business Partners since 1988 as a project manager, consultant, e-business Architect, and course instructor. Dan is a certified e-business Solution Designer, Solution Technologist, and an IBM Certified Database Associate. In 2008, Dan became a Content editor and finds that editing someone else's words is much easier than composing them from scratch. Dan enjoys woodworking, racquetball, golf, playing guitar, and traveling, particularly on week-long cruises.

Viola Suddaby (, developerWorks Web Editor, IBM

Photo of Viola SuddabyViola Suddaby is currently the Web editor for the XML zone here on developerWorks. She joined developerWorks in 2001 as the Web editor for the XML and Web architecture (now Web development) zones. Viola's worn many hats including those of an art teacher, a production editor for technical documents, and a technical writer of online help and other documents for computer software. She holds degrees in art education from the University of Central Missouri. For more info, see Viola's profile on My developerWorks.

21 December 2009

2009 seems to have come and gone in a flash. developerWorks celebrated its 10th birthday, we launched My developerWorks, cloud computing took off like a rocket, the economy sank like a rock, we discovered new devices we had to have, social computing came into the mainstream, and green is the color of the year. The one thing that didn't change: Technology continued to move forward, adapting to all of these developments. And XML is embedded in all of it.

With new technology come new topics for articles and tutorials, and we saw a wide variety in 2009. Here are the articles and tutorials that you, the reader, the reason we keep doing this, got excited about in 2009.

  • Monitor home energy with AMEE by James Smith: When you "think green", you think energy—how it is being used, and how to save it. Most people don't know that they can monitor their own energy usage. This tutorial is for any developer interested in working with energy data on the Web, with a particular focus on electricity data. You will use a number of technologies, including XML, Ruby, HTTP, Atom, Rails, Google Charts, and a little bit of Ajax thrown in for good measure. If you are not familiar with AMEE, you should start with Introduction to AMEE.
  • Using Apache Pivot to build an iTunes search client by Greg Brown: Using the open source development platform, Apache Pivot, Greg shows you how to create a simple but practical rich internet application that allows a user to execute searches against the contents of the iTunes Store. In the process, you will use WKTX, an XML-based language for user interface design.
  • Create an alerts system using XMPP, SMS, IBM DB2 pureXML, and PHP by Joe Lennon: In this tutorial, you will poll the European Central Bank (ECB)'s RSS feed for an updated currency exchange rate, store the new rate in a DB2 pureXML database, and send the rate in an instant message to another XMPP client. (If you are unfamiliar with XMPP, you might want to start with the other Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP) article in this list below.)
  • Working with XML on Android by Michael Galpin: Android is a modern, open source operating system and SDK for mobile devices. With it you can create powerful mobile applications. This becomes even more attractive when your applications can access Web services, which means you need to speak the language of the Web: XML. In this article, you will see different options for working with XML on Android and how to use them to build your own Android applications.
  • Using the Twitter REST API by Brian Carey: Twitter is undoubtedly one of the most recent and successful examples of social networking to appear on the World Wide Web. Twitter provides an API so Web developers can enable their users to access the various features that the Twitter site provides. In this article, learn the basics of using the Twitter REST API.
  • Meet CAM: A new XML validation technology by Brian Carey: Content Assembly Mechanism (CAM), a step up from XML schema, provides greater flexibility in defining both the XML semantics and the associated business rules. Learn more about CAM and its benefits over the alternatives.
  • XML Schema 1.1: An introduction to XML Schema 1.1 by Neil Delima, Sandy Gao, Michael Glavassevich, and Khaled Noaman: With XML Schema's wide adoption and diversity of usage, schema users have requested many improvements and new capabilities. The W3C XML Schema working group has developed XML Schema 1.1 to address these most commonly requested features including several which address shortcomings of XML Schema 1.0. In this multi-part series of articles, the authors introduce XML Schema 1.1 with an overview of the features introduced in this emerging standard, and, in each article, take an in-depth look at the additions and changes from an XML developer point of view.
  • Integrate your PHP application with Google Contacts by Vikram Vaswani: The Google Contacts Data API provides a powerful, client-neutral API to process a user's private Gmail contact information. Write a custom PHP application to retrieve, add, delete, and modify contacts. Vikram shows you, using detailed examples, how to get started with this API.
  • Build a pureXML and JSON application: a 3-part series by Nuno Job, Susan Malaika, Michael Schenker, Faton (Tony) Avdiu, Han Nguyen, Andy Smith, and Mark Weitzel: When some apps exchange information between clients and servers, they benefit from persisting JSON objects to maintain state across sessions. With the first article, you will learn to store, manage, and query JSON with DB2 pureXML and a simple JSON-to-XML mapping. In the second article, you will start with the pureXML Universal Services for JSON and step through the configuration and testing to expose the JSON data. With the third article of the series, you learn about OpenSocial gadgets as you construct an application using the pureXML capability of DB2. When you finish, you will have a pureXML application whose user interface is a gadget that you can deploy in any OpenSocial-compliant Web site.
  • XML: The bridge between GWT and PHP by Federico Kereki: Google Web Toolkit (GWT) applications, apart from connecting to servlets in time-honored Java fashion, can also use PHP Web services to send and receive data in XML. You'll explore methods to generate XML documents and process them, both in the Java language and in PHP.
  • Meet the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP)by M. Tim Jones: XMPP is a popular, open, instant-messaging protocol for XML-based communication over the Internet. Discover the potential of XMPP for general messaging over HTTP.

Check out these topics and see if you agree with other readers. And keep your eyes on the XML zone in 2010. We hope your 2009 was a good one, and we hope you have an even better year in 2010!



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