Wednesday Jan 22, 2014

New CAM XML Editor v3.1 and CAMV validation release now available

The focus for this release is enhancements, bug fixes and performance improvements for both the CAM editor and CAMV validation engine.

The new CAM Editor V3.1 provides the following improved functionality:

  • Enhanced XSD schema importing especially for HL7, GML, OAGi and NIEM complexities
  • New UTF-8 handling to improve international support in elements and annotations
  • Editor entry of annotations improved and enhanced
  • Better XML example generating details (choice items, negative numbers and repeat limits)
  • Improved xsd:annotations handling during import processing (faster + suppress duplicates)
  • Improved bi-directional data processing using Open-XDX for open data query and update
  • Feature and bug fixes for the CAMV rules engine
  • CAMV now allows mixed content for validation

Available from http://www.cameditor.org

Monday Nov 04, 2013

Creating, using and managing XML component dictionaries quick tutorials

XML Component Dictionary capabilities are provided in conjunction with the CAM Editor toolset.  These dictionaries accelerate the development of consistent XML information exchanges using standard sets of dictionary components.

The quick tutorials are aimed at showing the 'how to' of the basic capabilities to jump start use of XML dictionaries with the CAM Editor.

The collection of dictionary tutorials videos run for a total of approximately 20 minutes.  Each video can be reviewed individually also.

Learn how to use the dictionary functions to create dictionaries by harvesting data model components from existing XSD schema, SQL database table schema, or simple Excel / Open Office spreadsheets with tables of components listed.

Also included are tips and functions relating to use of NIEM exchange development, IEPD and EIEM techniques.

These videos should be viewed in conjunction with reviewing the overall concepts and techniques described in the companion video on the CAM Editor and Dictionaries overview.  The approach is aligned with OASIS and Core Components Technical Specification (CCTS) standards specifications for XML components and dictionaries.

Dictionary collections can be stored locally on the file system, or local network, or collaboratively on the web or cloud deployment, or can be shared and managed securely using the Oracle Enterprise Repository (OER) tool.

Also included are techniques relating to the use of the NIEM approach for developing XML exchange schema and IEPD packages.  This includes generating reuse scores, wantlist, and cross reference spreadsheets.

Included in the latest release of the CAM Editor is the ability to use the analyse dictionary tool to determine duplicate components, conflicting component definitions, missing component descriptions and so on.  This ensures high quality dictionary component specifications.  Using the CAM Editor you can also create MindMap models and UML physical models of your dictionary components sets.

For a complete guide to using the CAM Editor see the main YouTube video tutorials website and the CAM Editor website.


Monday Oct 21, 2013

Oracle BPM and Open Data integration development

Rapidly developing Oracle BPM application solutions with data source integration previously required significant Java and JDeveloper skills. Now using open source tools for open data development significantly reduces the coding needed.  Key tasks can be performed with visual drag and drop designing combined with menu selections entry and automatic form generation directly from XSD schema definitions.

The architecture used is extremely lightweight, portable, open platform and scalable allowing integration with a variety of Oracle and non-Oracle data sources and systems.

Two videos available on YouTube walk through the process at both an introductory conceptual level and then a deep dive into the programming needed using JDeveloper, Oracle BPM composer and Oracle WLS (WebLogic Server) along with the CAM editor and Open-XDX open source tools.

Also available are coding samples and resources from the GitHub project page, along with working online demonstration resources on the VerifyXML site.

Combining Oracle BPM with these open source tools provides a comprehensive simple and elegant solution set. Development times are slashed and rapid prototyping is enabled. Also existing data sources can be integrated using open data formats with either XML or JSON along with CRUD accessing via the Open-XDX Java component. The Open-XDX tool is a code-free approach where data mapping is configured as templates using visual drag and drop in the CAM Editor open source tool.  XML or JSON is then automatically generated or processed (output or input) and appropriate SQL statements created to support the data accessing.  

Also included is the ability to integrate with fillable PDF forms via the XML templates and the Java PDF form filling library.  Again minimal Java coding is needed to associate the XML source content with the PDF named fields. 

The Oracle BPM forms can be automatically generated from XSD schema definitions that are built from the data mapping templates.  This dramatically simplifies development work as all the integration artifacts needed are created by the open source editor toolset.

The developer level video is designed as a tutorial with segments, hands-on demonstrations and reviews.  This allows developers to learn the techniques and approaches used in incremental steps. The intended audience ranges from data analysts to developers and assumes only entry level Java skills and knowledge.  Most actions are menu driven while Java coding is limited to simply configuring values and parameters along with performing builds and deployments from JDeveloper and Oracle WLS.  

Additional existing Oracle online training resources can be referenced on Oracle BPM and WLS that cover other normal delivery aspects such as user management and application deployment.

Wednesday Mar 27, 2013

New CAM Editor v2.4 release with enhanced Collaboration tools

The focus for this release is improved collaboration support including better dictionary generation, models, reports, spreadsheets and enhancement of the rules entry tools and rules processing. New for this release is support for Italian language localization.

The new XPath conditional rule entry wizard makes XPath rules definition significantly easier for cross-field validations and more. We have also improved the rule handling in the CAMV engine to be more consistent.

For collaboration the locations of dictionaries collections can now be located at a URL, a file system or stored in the Oracle Enterprise Repository (OER). Coupled with this are now the consistent dictionary collections and database connections manager tools for configuration management. Also better generation of dictionaries from spreadsheets and a new spreadsheet to dictionary utility XSLT tool. Dictionary XML component generation has also been improved adding a new Components section to itemize components in dictionaries along with more and more consistent handling for dictionary content types, rules and annotations.

The template evaluation report and NIEM NDR (Naming and Design Rule) checking is improved including better representation terms.

The XSD schema importing and exporting now supports the use of Appinfo tags for application specific detailing of exchange data relationships.

For models we have enhanced the Mindmaps to include color coding of Added and Updated annotations plus SQL DBmappings and choice items.

For reports we have added a new Export to XML option for the popular Tabular Report view. This exported XML is compatible with importing into an Excel spreadsheet or can be custom rendered using a stylesheet or XSLT transformation.

Several enhancements have been made to the CAMV validation engine along with XSD schema generating and annotations handling. For Open-XDX SQL data integration we now have a nifty utility that can generate MySQL database tables from CSV text file data exports.

In summary the new CAM Editor V2.4 provides the following improved functionality:

  • All new XPath rules entry Wizard tool

  • Significantly enhanced Dictionary generation

  • Collaboration support including Oracle Enterprise Repository (OER) and URL locations

  • Better dictionary collection and SQL database connections management

  • Enhanced Mindmap model generating

  • XML export format for Tabular Report View

  • Italian language localization

  • CAMV rules engine improvements

  • New spreadsheet handling utilities

  • More consistent NIEM NDR evaluation

    To download the latest software please see the CAMeditor.org download site.

    Saturday Mar 02, 2013

    Migrate Excel text CSV / SQL Server CSV -> SQL TABLE CREATE / INSERT data tool

    Loading CSV text data into a MySQL database table is an art form. Obviously the text data can trip up for a variety of reasons from non-unique keys to missing data columns to invalid number or date formats. I recently needed to load over 20 such tables from a SQL Server CSV text file dump.  The same techniques would work for data from an Excel csv text file too.

    To automate the process as much as possible I wrote a quick XSLT utility (called converter-txt-2-sql.xsl) that reads in the CSV text file, examines the first line that contains the table column field names, then analyses the samples by scanning the entire input data lines, and generates a valid CREATE TABLE {name} ( {column(s)}); SQL statement.  Then in a second pass it builds the INSERT VALUES ({data}) statement for all the following data lines in the CSV.

    It does a pretty good job, about 98% of what you need.  You still need to do some manual editing of the CREATE TABLE SQL generated.  Essentially it can only guess at the lengths for each column - so you may want to manually adjust those, along with setting the key field column name (it assumes the first one for that), and then if your data is null or unique and so on.  But those are quick edits once it has all the basics there for you.

    It assumes that each line is one data record in the CSV text file input; so you cannot have multiple linefeeds inside your data lines, only one at the end of each line; a fair assumption most of the time.

    Having got it working I was able to load up the twenty tables in less than an hour.  There is still room to improve the XSLT logic to handle various edge conditions better, but for the time I invested in writing the XSLT its a fair level of maturity, awaiting the next project to see if it needs more refinement.  Plus it is a nifty example of using XSLT to read in a text source file and output text (in this case SQL statements).  Note: depending on your XSLT processor (I used Saxon) you may need to feed a dummy xml file in e.g. <dummy/> just to satisfy the processing engine.

    Anyway - you can find the XSLT here: http://sourceforge.net/projects/camprocessor/files/CAM%20Editor/Misc/  and download the converter-txt-2-sql.xsl and try it for your own text data loading needs. It is provided "as is" so use at your own discretion and you should probably have run XSLT before using a tool like OxygenXML or similar that supports the Saxon processor.

    I found it worked well to migrate over SQL Server tables quickly into MySQL just working from the raw csv text export files from SQL Server that had been sent to me.  It's not completely perfect but it should suffice for proof of concept purposes and quick demonstrations. And you have to know what you are doing, to be able to resolve syntax and data integrity errors.  However I was able to load over 50,000 data records well enough.

    Of course if you can get a live connection from MySQL to SQL Server then you can use the built-in migration tools MySQL has.  This little XSLT utility is useful when you do not have that option.  Or if people are using Excel spreadsheets with data tables and you want to convert those over to SQL tables.


    Thursday Oct 25, 2012

    SQL to XML open data and NIEM training video posted

    Learn how to build a working XML query/response system with SQL database accessing and XML components from example NIEM schema and dictionary.

    Software development practitioners, business analysts and managers will find the materials accessible and valuable in showing the decision making processes that go into constructing a working XML exchange.

    The 22 minute video available online shows how to build a fully working ULEXS-SR exchange using a Vehicle license search example.  Also included are aspects of NIEM training for assembling an IEPD schema with data models.

    Materials are focused on practical implementers, after viewing the instruction material you can use the open source tools and apply to your own SQL to XML use cases and information exchange projects.

    All the SQL and XML code, editor tools, dictionary and instructions that accompany the tutorial video are also available for download so you can try everything yourself. 

    See http://www.youtube.com/user/TheCameditor to run the video.

    And the open source project web site (sponsored by Oracle) contains all the resources, downloads and supplemental materials.

    Enjoy.

    Tuesday Oct 09, 2012

    SQL to XML open data made simple

    The perennial question for people is how to easily generate XML from SQL table content?  The latest CAM Editor release really tackles this head on by providing a powerful and simple toolset. 

    Firstly you can visually browse your SQL tables and then drag and drop from columns and tables into the XML structure editor.   This gives you a code-free method of describing the transformation you require.  So you do not need to know about the vagaries of XML and XSD schema syntax.

    Second you can map directly into existing industry domain XML exchange structures in the XML visual editor, again no need to wrestle with XSD schema, you have WYSIWYG visual control over what your output will look like.

    If you do not have a target XML structure and need to build one from scratch, then the CAM Editor makes this simple.  Switch the SQL viewer into designer mode, then take your existing SQL table and drag and drop it into the XML structure editor.  Automatically the XML wizard tool will take your SQL column names and definitions and create equivalent XML for you and insert the mappings.

    Simply save the structure template, and run the Open Data generator menu option, and your XML is built for you.

    Completely code-free template driven development.

    To see this in action, see our video demonstration links and then download the tools and samples and try it yourself.

    Sunday Oct 07, 2012

    New CAM Editor v2.3 with Open-XDX for Open Data APIs

    Creating actual working XML exchanges, loading data from data stores, generating XML, testing, integrating with web services and then deployment delivery takes a lot of coding and effort. Then writing the documentation, models, schema and doing naming and design rule (NDR) checks and packaging all this together (such as for NIEM IEPD use).

    What if there was a tool that helped you do all that easily and simply?

    Welcome to the new Open-XDX and the CAM Editor!

    Open-XDX uses code-free techniques in combination with CAM templates and visual drag and drop to rapidly design your XML exchange. Then Open-XDX will automatically generate all the SQL for you, read the database data, generate and populate the valid output XML, and filter with parameters. To complete the processing solution Open-XDX works with web services and JDBC database connections as a callable module that can be deployed plug and play with your middleware stack, all with just a few lines of Java code (about 5 actually).

    You can build either Query/Response or Publish/Subscribe services from existing data stores to XML literally in minutes. To see a demonstration of using Open-XDX, a MySQL data store and integrating with Oracle Web Logic server please see this short few minutes video - http://youtube.com/user/TheCameditor

    There is also a Quick Guide available that provides more technical insights along with a sample pack download of templates and SQL that you can try for yourself.

     To view online demonstrations of using Open-XDX see the VerifyXML.org site and GitHub resources.

    Head on over to our project resource site to learn more, download the latest CAM Editor and see links to all the resources and materials.

    We look forward to seeing how the developer community is able to jump start information sharing initiatives using this new innovative approach.

    Friday Jun 29, 2012

    CAM XML Editor version 2.2.1 now available.

    CAM Editor v2.2.1 release is now available. Lots of nice enhancements, CAMV performance boost and important bug fixes for DoD, NIEM and LEXS schema.

    Download is available from the CAM XML Editor Resource Site


    The CAM editor is the leading open source XML Editor/Validation/Schema designer for rapidly building and deploying complete XML information exchanges. Provides a visual WYSIWYG structure with rule entry wizards and drag and drop dictionary components. Will import, analyze and refactor existing XML Schema.

    Oracle is a proud sponsor of the project and its use on the NIEM.gov initiative.

    Creates XSD schema + JAXB bindings, Mindmap or UML models (XMI), XML test suite examples, HTML documentation + spreadsheets (NIEM IEPDs). XSD schema export in default, flatten, NIEM, and OASIS modes. Generates canonical component dictionaries from schema sets, ERwin models, or spreadsheets.

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    Not all XML is created equal. XML Orb looks at the challenges of creating information exchanges with XML and NIEM and how this can be made simpler, comprehensible, consistent and reliable.

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