XML News from Wednesday, August 17, 2005

A minor annoyance I keep noticing on otherwise well-designed sites including FreshDirect, SpeakEasy, and Amazon. Why can't anyone forget credit cards that have obviously expired? I understand that you may need to store the old data for purposes of verifying old purchases (though this data should probably be purged after six months or some such) but why do you keep asking me to pay with a credit card that expired two years ago? I haven't used that card for months. I've made multiple payments on other cards. Why can't you update the default card? This is just plain stupid.

The W3C SVG and CSS Working Groups have posted the fourth public working draft SVG's XML Binding Language (sXBL). sXBL works like literal result element used as stylesheet is XSLT. That is, an sXBL document is an SVG document that can contain content from other namespaces. This SVG document specifies bindings between elements in those namespaces and particular SVG shapes. When an SVG processor renders the complete document, it replaces the content from other namespaces with their SVG bindings. This would be more useful if it were also possible to have external sXBL documents (more like traditional stylesheets) that don't require the source document and the SVG to be together in one place. Perhaps this will come in sXBL 2 some time down the road. Ultimately, this would allow browsers to render XML documents that don't look remotely like text, such as MathML and MusicXML. If you're curious about this, you might be interested in An early look at sXBL I wrote for IBM developerWorks.