Justsystem Offers Peek at XML Management Architecture

The Japanese company says its xfy (pronounced "ex-fie") technology makes a direct relationship between source and presentation vocabularies, and can process many different types of XML documents as compound documents.

WASHINGTON—Justsystem Corp. showed off a preview version of its upcoming platform for creating, integrating and expressing XML documents Tuesday at the XML 2004 conference here.

Justsystem, based in Tokushima, Japan, debuted its xfy technology—pronounced "ex-fie"—at a media briefing at the conference. Xfy is basically an XML management architecture, the company said.

Kazumori Ukigawa, president and CEO of the company, said xfy will represent his companys formal introduction to the American marketplace, as Justsystem until now has conducted most of its business in Japan. Xfy will ship in the first half of next year, but Justsystem announced the availability of a preview version at the XML 2004 conference.

Justsystems xfy provides an architecture for authoring compound XML documents where multiple vocabularies can be integrated into a single editing space, the company said.

Ukigawa called XML and its adoption "the most important paradigm shift in the information era."

He said xfy features an "intension-oriented document handling model that facilitates reuse of components across different applications." Justsystems "intension-oriented" model is not to be confused with "intention," as intension is synonymous with description or connotation or set of properties.

And with this model, xfy makes a direct relationship between source and presentation vocabularies, which is maintained by the products Vocabulary Connection technology. In fact, the Vocabulary Connection technology supports plug-ins that reduce the need for application-specific modules for XML interpretation, the company said.

"This system is very, very flexible," Ukigawa said, noting that xfy can process many different types of XML documents as compound documents.

He said Justsystem has focused in recent years on Java and XML development.

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Tim Bray, director of Web technologies at Sun Microsystems Inc., praised Justsystem for its ability to handle mixed XML vocabularies and for its use of Java.

"Think of it as XSLT [Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations] with the ability to edit," Ukigawa said of xfy.

Robert Glushko, a professor at the University of California at Berkeley and director of the universitys Center for Document Engineering, called the architecture an innovative one.

"Xfys plug-in architecture is an innovative approach to solving the critical problem of editing compound documents with multiple XML schemas, and the out-of-the-box support for XHTML and SVG is very smooth," Glushko said in a statement.

"Furthermore, xfys capabilities for supporting new vocabularies with VCD, a kind of enhanced XSLT, look very promising," Glushko said. "We look forward to using xfy for teaching and research projects at the Center for Document Engineering at UC Berkeley, where schema-driven user interfaces and tools are a cornerstone of our work."

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