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XML, or eXtensible Markup Language, is the modern-day equivalent of SGML, or Standard Generalized Markup Language.  I'm sure that clears everything up, doesn't it? Basically, XML is a way of 'marking up,' or tagging, data, so that you can use it in a bunch of different places -- print, on the web, on handheld devices, on anything you can think of. XML is just a document (well,  several documents), and in order to have your data tagged in XML, you simply follow these rules.

It's a big part of what I do, but XML has become so big that a lot of people "do" XML.  PowerPoint slides and White paper coming, but until then check out my presentations page.

There are tons of sites dedicated to XML, but some of the best are:

Robin Cover's XML Page

Any good treatment of XML begins and ends at this site. If you can't find it here, you can find a link to it here.  Unfortunately, he only updates it daily, so it's not too good at keeping up with the latest and greatest in the rapidly evolving world of technology.  Just a great site, all around.

The W3C XML Page

This is the 'official' XML page of the World Wide Web Consortium. It has a bunch of links to all the different pieces that make up XML (and there are a lot of them), but this is a very technical site, and it's pretty boring stuff. This is certainly the place to go to read all the details about XML, but I recommend a pretty strong beverage before diving in here. Forget coffee. I'm thinking more along the lines of jet fuel.

A very well-maintained site (by O'Reilly) that features a ton of information, from beginners level to more advanced and recent developments with the XML specification.

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