Conceptual Modeling XML Schemata Using UML

Rainer Eckstein, Silke Eckstein


The Extensible Markup Language (XML) has found acceptance as a standard for storing and exchanging structured and semi-structured data. With its expressive power, XML enables a great variety of applications relying on such structures. As the data schema, an XML schema is a means by which documents and objects can be structured. Our approach is to model XML schemata and thus classes of documents on the basis of UML (Unified Modeling Language). We consider UML to be the connecting link between software engineering and document design, i.e., it is possible to design object-oriented software together with the necessary XML structures. For this reason, we describe how to transform the static part of UML, i.e. class diagrams, into XML schemata. The major challenge for the transformation is to define a suitable mapping reflecting the semantics of a UML specification in an XML schema correctly. Because of XML's specific properties, we slightly extend UML in a UML compliant way. Additionally, the resulting XML schema profile supports the tuning of the transformation to XML schema. Our approach provides the stepping stone to bridge the gap between object-oriented software design and the development of XML data schemata.


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