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Essential ADO.NET by Bob Beauchemin

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10.6. ADO.NET Flat Files and Semistructured Files

Flat files are commonly used for data transfer between businesses. Semistructured data pertains to any format (usually a document) that combines data and metadata and includes HTML and XML mixed-content models. There is even a standard called XHTML that supports exposing HTML in an XML-compliant format (that is, the HTML is a well-formed XML document).

In the past, business exchange of flat files was a specialized type of data access that required writing a new program for each new data format encountered. Standards such as EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) and EDIFACT (Electronic Data Interchange for Administration Commerce and Transport) codified certain data exchange formats. The need for standardization ...

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