Work on Your Blog Idea

Assignment 1 — XML Foundations Fall 2008

Assigned: Thursday, September 4th, 2008
Due: Thursday, September 11th, 2008


Think about what you want to blog about. Take some area that you care about. Think about the blog post structure and at least one non-blog reuse of the data. The goal of this assignment is to create a conceptual frame for all the following assignments.


The goal of this assignment is to come up with an idea that you find interesting and that has some connection to the blog theme. The ideal idea has a blogging facet (things happen on a timeline and the timeline perspective in interesting) and at least one alternative facet (things can also be viewed differently, which also is an interesting way of looking at them). The ultimate goal is to come up with HTML representations for both facets. Here is an example:

Assume your are a competitive runner. You regularly participate in races and would like to start blogging about it. Your typical report of a race weekend will have images, a textual report, and your race results (and maybe those of your team mates). After a while, you realize that your blog actually is the best data source for you club's result list, so now you want to use the race results in your blog entries to generate the latest race results for your club. All the data you need is in the blog, the dates, the race name, the results. But only if these results are accessible for machine-based processing (dedicated elements for the race name, a well-designed structure for representing race results for one or multiple competitors, including quite complex concepts such as overall results, age group results, team results, …) will it be possible to reliably use the blog data to generate the list of race results.

While the application area is entirely up to you, it is required that there is a blog side to it, so that the data can be presented in blog style. This is not much of a limitation, because that essentially means there must be dated things, they must have a title, and there should be some description of them. Any other information may be optional for the blog view, but can be essential for the alternative view (in the example above, the detailed results may not appear in the blog of race reports, but they are essential for generating the list of race results).

Please submit a precise textual description of the conceptual data model for your blogging scenario. It may be accompanied by a graphical model as well, which often is helpful as an explanation. Please also describe the two facets your application scenario deals with.

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