Required Knowledge for the Admin and Developer

The most specialized of the above groups are the Watson™ Explorer Engine Admin and the Application Developer. It will be their burden to understand the technology behind the Watson Explorer Engine and its environment.

Building and maintaining a Watson Explorer Engine application is designed to be user-friendly and simple, but it does have certain prerequisites. Before attempting to build your Information Optimization application, make sure you or someone on your team has experience with:

  • Remote Data Sources - You should be familiar with how to access remote data sources, networking protocols, file management, security protocols, and routing. The Watson Explorer Engine application will need to successfully navigate complex networks and file stores using protocols from a variety of vendors; the more you know about them, the easier it will be for you to enable all relevant data to be aggregated.
  • XML - An extensible mark-up language providing a basic framework for the conveyance of almost any kind of data. Watson Explorer Engine uses it as the lingua franca to which is converts all data for its own indices. In fact, your Watson Explorer Engine application itself will be a collection of XML elements and attributes.
  • XPath - A programming language that navigates and parses XML. It uses a set of characters to express a path through XML data in order to navigate the data tree structure of an XML document. Knowing XPath will help you analyze data you are receiving from data seeds, as well as the data contained within your Watson Explorer Engine application.
  • XHTML - Mark-up language most frequently used on the Internet. Technically, it is the re-implementation of HTML as an XML schema although functionally there is arguably little difference between the two. Knowledge of XHTML or HTML will greatly improve your ability to analyze data seeds that originate on the Internet or even on an HTML-based Intranet.

    Given that a common gateway to a Watson Explorer Engine application is a web browser, knowing XHTML will also help you create better "displays" for your users. You will be able to customize and tailor the way your users interact with your application.

  • CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) - The abstraction of page layout from page content (XHTML). CSS is useful to understand when looking at the source code of sites that utilize CSS (such as Wordpress, Drupal, and other "web 2.0" sites). It can also be used to create more attractive and usable displays for your users when they interact with your Watson Explorer Engine application.