John E. Simpson

John E. Simpson is the author of Just XML (Prentice Hall PTR; 2nd edition forthcoming) and a regular contributor to XML mailing lists, particularly XML-L. He has been an application developer for more than 20 years, and is currently the Webmaster for several non-profit organizations based in Florida. He once closed a bar with Joseph Heller, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., and William Styron.

Articles by this author

Analyzing the Web

In his latest XML Tourist column John E. Simpson asks whether XML has a role to play in reporting website traffic statistics. He finds two applications that use XML to analyze website traffic.

Padded Downloads

John E. Simpson's XML Tourist column returns this month with a look at an XML format with roots that stretch back to the hallowed days of BBSes.

Canadian Broadcasting in XML

In this month's XML Tourist, John E. Simpson explores industry regulators' use of XML to exchange information about the Canadian broadcast spectrum.

Not Quite Restful

In his latest XML Tourist column, John E. Simpson explores some web services that aren't fully RESTful, including Google Maps.

Directory Trees to Document Trees

In this month's XML Tourist, John E. Simpsons discusses TreeSpace, a hard disk space analysis tool that uses XML to represent data portably.

The Silent Soundtrack

In this installation of XML Tourist, John E. Simpson presents an overview of the types of sound-to-text captioning available. Pinpointing closed captioning as the most suitable for use with computerized multimedia, he then explains how XML-based solutions address synchronization issues.

Mapping and Markup, Part 2

In the final part of his XML Tourist column's exploration of GML, John E. Simpson introduces us to the component schema parts as well as to some GML software.

The Dance of Markup

In his latest XML Tourist column, John E. Simpson visits a little-known XML vocabulary for representing reels -- that is, country folk dances.

Rainy Day XML

In John E. Simpson's latest XML Tourist column he explains how to use XML to survive yet another Florida hurricane.

Checkmate XML

In John E. Simpson's first XML Tourist column, he leads us on a tour of the world of XML-based chess applications.

From English to Dutch?

In John Simpson's final XML Q&A column, he explains how to use XML to facilitate phrase translation in multilingual apps, and announces his forthcoming new column.

Trickledown Namespaces?

In this month's Q&A column John Simpson explains how namespaces are inherited, or not, by children elements and attributes.

From XML to SMIL

In this month's XML Q&A column John E. Simpson explores the interaction of plain text, SMIL, and XSLT.

From One String to Many

In John Simpson's latest XML Q&A column he describes several ways, including those for XSLT/XPath 2.0 and EXSLT, to tokenize strings.

Little Back Corners

In this month's XML Q&A column John E. Simpson examines some of the back corners of XPath processor namespace handling.

A Confusion of Styles

In John E. Simpson's latest XML Q&A column he discusses various styling options and alternatives for a nonstandard HTML variant.

From Word to XML

In the year's last Q&A column John E. Simpson discusses some of the issues surrounding the conversion of MS Word documents to XML.

Overriding Concerns

In his latest XML Q&A column John E. Simpson answers a question about merging XML files with XSLT.

Nobody Asked Me, But...

In this month's XML Q&A column John Simpson once again asks and answers questions which no one has asked, once again renewing his interest in obscuring XML instances.

Comments in a "No comment" World

In this month's XML Q&A column, John E. Simpson examines two issues related to documentation of, and comments in, XML documents and schemas.

Finding IDs

In this month's XML Q&A column, John E. Simpson answers questions about XPath, XSLT, and ID attributes, as well as updates last month's column about the XML Resume Library.

XML Power Job Hunting

In this month's XML Q&A column John E. Simpson introduces the XML Resume Library, an XML vocabulary for creating resume and CV documents.

RSS on the Client

In this month's Q&A column John E. Simpson explains what to do with RSS feeds, reviewing some of the available RSS client applications.

XML and JavaScript in the Browser

In this month's Q&A column, John Simpson describes some JavaScript libraries for parsing XML in popular web browsers, and he offers a high-level explanation of XSL-FO.

"Displaying" XLinks?

John E. Simpson, in his latest XML Q&A column, discusses how to make XML applications XLink-aware.

Hacking XUL and WXS-based Transformations

In this month's XML Q&A, John Simpson offers introductory advice for customizing Mozilla skins with XUL, as well as suggesting a way to use WXS and XSLT to do XML transformations.

XML and Web Sites

In his latest XML QA column John Simpson tackles the issue of using XML to build web sites along the way he includes links to a long list of useful resources.

Dirty XSLT Output

John Simpson returns to answer more XML questions; this time he tackles a tricky interaction between implicit and explicit XSLT rules.

Nobody REALLY Asked Me, But...

On the second anniversary of his column, John Simpson returns to the question of obscuring the contents of an XML document, exploring a good deal of XSLT along the way.

Top Ten Tips to Using XPath and XPointer

XPath and XPointer allow developers to find specific information inside an XML document and manipulate that information. John Simpson, author of XPath and XPointer, offers ten tips that XML developers can put to use immediately.

Variables and Paths

In this month's Q&A column, John Simpson answers questions about XSLT variables and XML document paths.

Transforming Experiences

In this month's Q&A column, John Simpson answers to XSL questions, one about XSL-FO and one about a common XSLT mistake.

Strange Transformations

In this month's Q&A column, John Simpson explains how to handle unwanted CDATA sections in source trees and offers some advice for serving XHTML to old browsers.

Basic Training

In this month's Q&A column, John Simpson attends to the most basic XML question of all: "What is XML?"

From Excel to XML

John Simpson discusses converting spreadsheets to XML, and returns to the issue of legal XML element names.

Elements Revisited

John Simpson answers deep questions about content models and element names, with detours into the simplicity of humans and machines.

Valid Frustrations

John Simpson talks about some of the limits of DTD content models, suggesting an interesting XSLT-based alternative.

Nobody Asked Me, But...

John Simpson asks and answers the questions no one ever asks about XML, uncovering some interesting tidbits.

The Naming of Parts

John Simpson explains how to name parts of XML documents, detouring through the tricky areas of EBNF, XML spec productions, and Unicode characters.

Namespace Nuances

This month's Q&A column tackles the question of how to write DTDs for XML applications that use namespaces.

XSLT Surgery

This month our question and answer columns covers XSLT issues, from using multiple languages to styling third party content.

Will XML replace HTML?

The relationship between XML and HTML is often confusing for the Web developer coming to XML for the first time. Our Q&A column explains all.

From DTDs to Documents

This month our question and answer column covers guidelines for good DTD design and the thorny problem of generating Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat documents from XML.

Choosing an XML Parser

Validating or non-validating? Java-based, Perl, or C? This month we tackle the tricky issue of which parser to use for your XML applications.

XML Questions Answered

In the first of our new monthly XML Q&A columns we tackle the problem of converting HTML to XML, ask "What is markup?", and discover whether XML has any weaknesses.