What Is XML?

XML (Extensible Markup Language) is a text-based data storage language. It uses a series of tags that you define to store data. The file may begin with some XML declaration tags, followed by a single root data node that contains all the other data nodes in a hierarchy.

You do not need to explicitly declare the tags; you just start using them. For instance, Listing 7.1 shows an XML file describing three PhoneNumber records.

Listing 7.1. A Simple XML File
 <AddressBook> <PhoneNumber> <LastName>Jenkins</LastName> <FirstName>Jeremy</FirstName> <HomePhone>987-654-3210</HomePhone> </PhoneNumber> <PhoneNumber> <LastName>Ketterling</LastName> <FirstName>Karen</FirstName> <WorkPhone>456-769-2340</WorkPhone> </PhoneNumber> <PhoneNumber> <LastName>Ludovico</LastName> ...

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