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InfoQ Homepage Presentations Heresy & Heretical Open Source: A Heretic's Perspective

Heresy & Heretical Open Source: A Heretic's Perspective



Douglas Crockford presents a debate existing around XML and JSON, and the negative effect of the Intellectual Property laws on open source software.


Douglas Crockford is a senior JavaScript Architect at Yahoo! He has also worked on the computerization of media at Atari, Lucasfilm, and Paramount. He co-founded Electric Communities and was its CEO from 1993 to 2001. He was involved in the development of the programming language E and is the author of "JavaScript: The Good Parts". He is mostly known for creating JavaScript Object Notation (JSON).

About the conference

Strange Loop is a developer-run software conference. Innovation, creativity, and the future happen in the magical nexus "between" established areas. Strange Loop eagerly promotes a mix of languages and technologies in this nexus, bringing together the worlds of bleeding edge technology, enterprise systems, and academic research. Of particular interest are new directions in data storage, alternative languages, concurrent and distributed systems, front-end web, semantic web, and mobile apps.

Recorded at:

Mar 11, 2011

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Community comments

  • Ugh...flash

    by Les Stroud,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    Please add video tag support. Flash requirement is such a drag.

  • Open source is not the main topic of the lecture

    by Alexander Shopov,

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    There is some information about OSS from minute 40 to minute 50, otherwise this is another JSON/Markup history lecture by Crockford. Not bad but definitely the topic should be rephrased.

  • Finally!

    by Ishan Jayawardene,

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    Waited a long time for this video to be put up :)

  • Xml is not dead yet

    by Faisal Waris,

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    JSON is well established without question but that is not the death knell of xml.

    JSON does not have any type for time/date and numbers are floats by definition. Yes you can use convention to denote other types but that is beyond the spec - which means a new spec and *more complexity*.

    Further JSON formats cannot be described declaratively (no schema).

    I agree XML (and related technologies) are now complex but the complexity is just handled by tooling/infrastructure - which are pretty good now.

    For example, our B2B message are handled by an XML 'appliance' which can validate messages (WS-Security & XML Schema) at almost wire speeds.

    Granted, XML text serialization is verbose but XML has an Infoset (data model) which is independent of any particular serialization format. You can have binary XML serialization (a few standards exist) and who knows maybe in future we will have a JSON-like serialization format for XML too.

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