By: J.D. Hildebrand
Abstract: Daily news summary for 4 October 1999. Edited by J.D. Hildebrand.
The time: Early October, time to finalize marketing plans for the next
The place: An "off-site" meeting room at a local hotel, furnished with
a conference table, coffee setup, and continental breakfast
The players: Product managers, product marketing managers, division director,
Lou: ...and so you see, it is vital that we reconceptualize our
message to match the stratification in job function and scope of managerial
authority among members of the target constituency for optimum efficiency and
Phil: That's great, Lou, just great. So what are we talking about
really? Who are these guys?
Lou: Well, first there's the enterprise group. That's the CIO, DP
director, director of software development...titles like that.
Phil: And the hands-on guys?
Lou: Yeah, the coders. Team leaders, developers, project managers,
analysts, software engineers.
Phil: Not "programmers"?
Lou: Nah, too downscale. Programmers are shareware guys, hobbyists.
We're looking for the deep pockets.
Phil: Right, right. And what about the Web staff?
Lou: That's where it gets complicated. A lot of these sites are still
built by somebody's son-in-law. We haven't found standard job titles or job
descriptions. Even "webmaster" -- that's a development job in some
companies, administrative in others.
Phil: I don't get it. Everybody's building e-commerce sites, intranets
-- bottom-line it for me. Who's doing this work?
Lou: Well...you might as well call 'em "Web boys." Yeah,
that's it. The whole damn industry's supported by Web boys.
Sound familiar? While most businesses are now actively pursuing Internet
strategies, the Internet development world's job titles, roles, and
responsibilities are not standard. A resume showing two years of "Web
development" tells the interviewer relatively little about the applicant's
That's where the Association of Internet Professionals' new technical
application level specifications come in.
The AIP is a coalition of Internet professionals, industry companies, and
educational institutions. Its mission, according to its home
page, is to "unify, support, and represent the global community of
Internet professionals." Among the activities the AIP undertakes in pursuit
of this aim is the development of certification standards and competency
definitions for specialties within the field.
The group's latest effort is the "technical application level"
specification, which defines six primary Internet job roles. "While
hundreds of Internet technical jobs exist in the market place under almost as
many titles," the group says, "...they are made up of a combination of
one or more of these six 'pure' job roles, in combination with
The roles include three programming specifications (general developer,
database specialist, and e-commerce transaction specialist) and three
administration specifications (Internet administrator, Internet enterprise
systems specialist, and security specialist).
"We have developed the baseline definitions that will help everyone
understand what different professionals within the Internet world should be
expected to know," AIP executive director Andrew Kraft told Developer
News. "Once these baseline competencies are defined, certification
firms -- many of them, like Microsoft, Adobe, and Compaq, are on our board --
can establish programs for certifying Internet professionals. If they're
consistent with our application levels, then we'll offer AIP accreditation to
You may be a database specialist or you may be an enterprise systems
specialist...but with AIP on your side, you'll no longer have to answer to
Association of Internet Professionals
15 E. 26th St., No. 1403
New York, NY 10010
Data Junction Corp. has announced the release of XML
Junction, its latest data solution offering. XML Junction combines
XML with legacy data and SQL DBMSs, allowing for faster reconciliation between
data and object definition differences, as well as with hundreds of other data
formats. XML Junction functions as an integration server, allowing for
bidirectional conversion between XML and the DTDs. Creation of an XML
document from existing data is simple -- point and click.
According to Mike Hoskins, President of Data Junction Corporation, XML
Junction's ability to bridge traditional applications and data sources brings
data transformation to a new plateau.
XML Junction manages to balance XML
standards with constantly changing data definitions, giving users a tool
which provides fast data adaptation. It's comprised of a visual designer
and a scalable transformation engine that automates the creation, parsing,
transformation and integration of XML objects via a graphical drag and drop
convention. Data stored in XML documents, as well as traditional applications,
can be continually managed to run within industry standards.
XML Junction runs on Windows NT, Windows 2000 and UNIX, and is priced under
$1,500 per license.
Data Junction Corp.
2201 Northland Dr.
Austin, TX 78756
As if Internet Explorer 5 hasn't had enough
knocks lately, its development team is now faced with repairing HTML
shortcomings in its default "Web Page, complete" save-page-to-disk
setting. It seems that Microsoft's IE5 code does not take into account XML
standards when it comes to retaining quotation marks around HTML
element attributes. Documents with the default setting of "Web Page,
complete" produce data that cannot be extracted by XML. Images,
sounds and other non-textual elements are not saved within this setting.
Web developers have discovered that when files created in IE5 are routed
through an XML parser, they fail to retain data not enclosed in quotes. This
means that document information such as dates, titles, etc. cannot be extracted.
For example, currently forms completed on the Web (within IE5) cannot be
utilized in custom database applications. This has serious implications to
e-commerce developers. The alternative, using the "Web Page, HTML
only" setting, will simply allow for document creation, sans sound,
pictures, and so on. The result isn't any more useful than a Word document.
According to Microsoft product manager Ray Sun, the problem is rooted in
the way Microsoft's HTML engine records data to disk so images are viewable
offline. The target of the source has to be rewritten such that images will load
relative URLs and be saved to a file. No fix date has been announced.
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