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Java & XML Data Binding Paperback – 7 Jun 2002

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Review

"...I highly recommend you buy this book." -- Mark Spritzler, JavaRanch June 2002

Good for those in need of a quick implementation guide with some solid reviews of existing frameworks. -- GameJug, Feb 2003

From the Publisher

This new title provides an in-depth technical look at XML Data Binding. The book offers complete documentation of all features in both the Sun Microsystems JAXB API and popular open source alternative implementations (Enhydra Zeus, Exolabs Castor and Quick). It also gets into significant detail about when data binding is appropriate to use, and provides numerous practical examples of using data binding in applications.

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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By MICHAEL ZOUMBOULAKIS on 1 Jan. 2003
Format: Paperback
It provides a useful coverage of the theory on data binding, but it is out of date with the current version of JAXB (1.0 beta as at the time of writing). There are some fundamental differences with the current version e.g. most of the examples on this book use DTD's instead of XML Schema which is the current standard that the JAXB RI uses. Also the java content tree in the current version of the JAXB provides interfaces and implementations, while in the book all the examples are assuming that the JAXB generates only concrete classes (and not interfaces); which was true for the previous version of JAXB.

Overall it is a good book but because XML-related technologies move so fast it has quickly become out-of-date. Most of the examples do not compile with the current version of JAXB and it is my opinion that anyone can learn much more from reading the "JAXB user guide" that comes with JAXB rather than buying and reading this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By knobboy on 8 Feb. 2003
Format: Paperback
There is still quite a bit of useful info in here, even though the JAXB 1.0 release renders quite a bit of it obsolete. If nothing else, it's useful as to the theory of XML data binding, and the design of applications that could benefit from it. It also has some useful schema examples.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Beware of booby-traps 20 Aug. 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Developing Java Web services including XML data binding is a new and exciting area. XML data binding is useful for XML request processing and for application configuration purposes. In both cases we need ewell-designed workable sample code to check each stage of system configuration, XML application development and deployment.
An excellent example of this approach can be found in "More servlets" by Marty Hall.
As for this book, I find it useful to grasp general concepts, but not as a detailed technical discussion it appears to be.
Sample code for chapter 3 is useful, but then we need a sample to actually compile and run some simple JAXB example. Unfortuantely, there is no way to accomplish this with the code that comes from the books's Web site.
Also, as early as in chapter 4, we have quite a big jump from basic discussion directly to using JAXB data binding in servlets - without any consideration of necessary intermediate steps: checking Tomcat configuration, running JAXB-free servlet examples, making servlet-free JAXB examples work, etc.
Needless to say, JAXB and other XML binding frameworks are useful for servlet development, but they are also useful
for JSP and other XML applications. From the other side, servlet parameters can be accessed using regular application server configuration features like it is done in Tomcat EXAMPLES app. All these considerations are completely missing from the book.
Besides poor sample code and appplication server discussion, another source of confusion is the absence of proper references to XSLT. In fact, the purpose of XML data binding is to enable Java program to work "like" an XSLT transformer, in principle, XML document processing can be done by XSLT. Again, reading the book there is no way to figure this out.
Excellent treatment of JAXB data binding is available online from IBM Web site, see Daniel Steinberg's tutorial. I'd also suggest Java Web Services Tutorial from Sun.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Outdated, incorrect information. Stay away! 24 Nov. 2003
By Anthony J. Serpico - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book was written before the version 1.0 release of the JAXB data binding API's. As a result much of the information in this book is incorrect and not current. If you follow the instruction in this book you will NOT sucessfully perform XML binding to java objects. For example, the book uses DTD's as the XML description model used by JAXB. This is wrong DTD's were dropped in favor of XML schemas. The instructions for using the JAXB jar files are wrong. The required jars have changed since this book was printed. The instructions for using the generated java data binding classes is wrong, the usage has changed since this book was written. The author tried to get to far ahead of the technology curve on JAXB and as a result authored this book too early in the JAXB life cycle. The book is of minimal value.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Waste of money 17 July 2003
By Francis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This does not talk about JAXB at all. What it talks is about some non standardised APIs that existed before JAXB.
The brief mention of JAXB ( 4 pages ) is only philosphical. Even that is w.r.t. an obselete version with DTD support.
( Current JAXB only supports XML schema )
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Outdated, incorrect information. Stay away! 24 Nov. 2003
By Anthony J. Serpico - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book was written before the version 1.0 release of the JAXB data binding API's. As a result much of the information in this book is incorrect and not current. If you follow the instruction in this book you will NOT sucessfully perform XML binding to java objects. For example, the book uses DTD's as the XML description model used by JAXB. This is wrong DTD's were dropped in favor of XML schemas. The instructions for using the JAXB jar files are wrong. The required jars have changed since this book was printed. The instructions for using the generated java data binding classes is wrong, the usage has changed since this book was written. The author tried to get to far ahead of the technology curve on JAXB and as a result authored this book too early in the JAXB life cycle. The book is of minimal value.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Good piece of information - But a little disappointed 17 Aug. 2002
By Mohan S Rao - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
The book contains a lot of good information on data binding. It also explains the "data binding" concept by breaking it down into "Marshalling", "UnMarshalling" and "Binding". The author has taken JAXB as a starting point to explain the "Data-Binding" framework. He has also taken the pain of going through other open source frameworks available for data-binding though they are not dealt with in great detail.
However I am a little disappointed because the author has taken a biased look at data-binding. He has not mentioned the drawbacks of data-binding in a single place. Obviously there are many drawbacks of such a approach. One of them is that your once independent data-containers are now tied to a framework. Secondly if there is a small modification made to the xml, the classes have to be re-generated and you end up with two code bases. Such issues are not mentioned in the book.
The least I would expect in such a detailed book when different frameworks are compared side by side is a comparison chart that I can refer quickly.
I give a four star rating because it contains a lot of detailed information about the data-binding framework but failed to tell why data-binding might not be the right solution.
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