XML vs. rel DBs [was: Re: [nycphp-talk] Many pages: one script]

Kenneth Downs ken at
Wed Aug 8 16:42:04 EDT 2007

Elliotte Harold wrote:
> David Krings wrote:
>> The best thing about XML is that it is really is just a flat file and 
>> everything in it has a beginning and an end. I cannot think of 
>> anything that one would want to store in XML that cannot be stored in 
>> a db and that also cannot be stored in a text file with way less 
>> overhead. Examples are welcome.
> You need to remember we're talking about XML databases that store 
> collections of XML documents, not simply a single XML document. A 
> single relational record can be easily stored in a tab-delimited text 
> file with way less overhead too. But when you have millions of these 
> things that you have to sort, search, update, backup, specify access 
> permissions, and so forth, then the database begins to show its worth.
> With that in mind, consider:
> The Encyclopedia Britannica
> The collected publications of O'Reilly Media
> The complete work product of Skadden-Arps
> The New York Times
> The collected works of William Shakespeare and other Elizaebthan 
> dramatists
> Then consider that you want to be able to make queries like, "Find all 
> the paragraphs containing both the words 'Bush' and 'incompetent'" so 
> you can't just shove everything into a BLOB.

Two words: text search.

Kenneth Downs
Secure Data Software, Inc.
631-689-7200   Fax: 631-689-0527
cell: 631-379-0010

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