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MIXED Monthly - May 2007

Newsletter of the MIXED project at DANS

Conference visit

Dirk Roorda has visited the first international workshop on database preservation, Edinburgh, March 23. Read more ...

Phase Transition

During the first three months, 2007 Jan - Mar, MIXED was in its definition stage.  In April we entered the design stage. In the definition stage we started looking for use cases: data producers, managers and users who might be interested in the results of MIXED. We did not finish this activity yet, we will continue it along side the next stages.

Design stage

In April, we started two Work Packages:

  • WP2: define an intermediate XML format for databases, spreadsheets and SPSS data. This format is to be called: M-XML (pronounce MixML)
  • WP3: develop a framework application for converting data between heterogeneous formats and M-XML. The idea is that for each filetype we write modules that do the recognition of the data and the two-way conversions. These modules can be plugged in into the framework. WP3 is only about the framework, not about the modules.

Personnel

We hired an information expert from Daidalos, Kris Klykens. We are forming a team of Java programmers.

Current activity

In WP3 we are doing experiments with plugin frameworks. There are several options: the Eclipse plugin structure, OSGI bundles with SPRING, and maybe more.

In WP2 we started comparing two office document formats:

  • ODF (Sun + OpenOffice)
  • OOXML (Microsoft Office)

Probably we'll derive M-XML of one of these. We'll try to define M-XML for databases in such a way that we have maximal integration with M-XML for spreadsheets. The same holds for M-XML for SPSS data.