Exposing Proprietary Data
To expose custom data in a format that can be easily consumed by a .NET application, you can take any of the following routes:
Develop a made-to-measure XML schema for the data and build a .NET class around it.
Write a COM–based OLE DB provider.
Write a simple .NET data provider.
Architect and develop a full-fledged .NET data provider.
Where should you concentrate your efforts? Your answer depends on the nature of the data you are providing and the audience you expect to reach. Each approach has pros and cons, and choosing the one that best fits your data is—guess what—up to you!
Using Tailor-Made Classes
XML lets you reach the same level of universality as OLE DB. In addition, XML is free from the problems that prevented ...