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From "David Bau" <david....@bea.com>
Subject Re: Start-with-java annotations
Date Wed, 19 Nov 2003 12:35:10 GMT
Robert writes (on comparison to Castor):

> maybe point 2 needs a little expansion: serialization must be
essentially lose-less in a java sense. i'd say that object round
tripping means being able to go from a symantically meaningful object
graph to an (easily) human readable (and symantically meaningful) xml
document and then back to an object graph which is equivalent to the
original.

I agree with the point - "serialization" isn't what we're after but just
"round tripping to XML".  Maybe we should call it "marshalling" instead of
serialization.  But I'm still interested in the details the distinction
you're drawing. If true serialization is loss-less, then the implication is
that marshalling is allowed to lose something.  What kinds of things should
fall into the gap?

For example:
  - How should we pick which parts of your classes go out to xml?
  - What about non-tree data graphs?  Non-acyclic ones?
  - Are there other things?

Maybe the gap should be programmer-defined.  JAX-RPC definitely provides a
standard with some "default" rules for how these things "should" work (in
start-from-java), but there's also definitely a lot of Java classes which
cannot be represented as XML using JAX-RPC default rules.

Feels to me that there are two Q's that should be answered to understand the
start-from-java problem:

1. To what extent do we need to be able to marshall all different kinds of
Java in the start-from-java case, particularly those which aren't covered by
JAX-RPC "default" rules?  For example, perhaps we should permit you to
marshal to/from fields rather than just public properties, if you annotate
the fields in a certain way...?

2. To what extent do we need to be able to generate all different kinds of
schema in the start-from-java case?  For example, perhaps you should be able
to specify that a specific property marshals to a specific XML element name,
or perhaps to an XML attribute instead of an element?

David




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