XML vs. JSON Debate

XML Moving Away From The Web?

Jessica Thornsby

Bloggers continue to discuss Twitter and Foursquare deprecating XML.

The news that both Twitter and Foursquare are to deprecate XML
has put the spotlight back on the old JSON or XML debate – and
provoked an unusually level-headed response. “Meh,” said
Norman Walsh
, as he explained that XML is designed to be used
when transmitting structured bundles of atomic values, and dealing
with unstructured data, while JSON is better for writing JavaScript
in a web browser. Whether JSON or XML is ‘best’ depends on the task
at hand.
James Clark
added that if you’re an experienced XML developer,
then you’re unlikely to panic and jump ship to JSON, just because
Twitter and Foursquare are deprecating the technology. James Clark
also insisted that XML isn’t going away, but he predicts it moving
away from the Web technology area, and becoming “one of many
technologies that are used on the server to manage and generate
what you do send over the wire.”

Now, Jeff Mesnil has posted his thoughts on XML. He agrees that XML will
become less common on the web, where he perceives HTML and JSON as
having the advantage, and sees XML moving into more
enterprise-orientated areas. He also takes this opportunity to
complain about XML schema and bindings, which he sees as replacing
“some noisy boilerplate code by other noisy boilerplate code.”
Although it did enforce some structure, not all constraints can be
expressed with schema, which resulted in him having to draft in an
additional programmatic phase in Java. He feels that good
documentation is enough in most instances and, anyway, “working
with JavaScript and JSON on the Web is much more simpler.”

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