Yenra : XML : XML Development Tools : Visual integration and code generation for database mapping


Altova, producer of XMLSPY, the world's leading XML development environment with over one million registered users, today announced the availability of the new Altova 2004 XML development tools product line, designed to meet the needs of software developers who are building advanced XML and Web services applications. The new Altova 2004 product line consists of complete updates to existing products, XMLSPY 2004, AUTHENTIC 2004, and STYLEVISION 2004, and introduces a new product, MAPFORCE 2004, a visual data mapping tool with code generation capabilities, essential for XML and database integration projects.

Altova's MAPFORCE 2004 is a powerful, visual data integration tool, which auto-generates custom data mapping code in multiple output languages such as XSLT and Java, to enable programmatic XML-to-XML or database-to-XML data transformations. Altova's new MAPFORCE 2004 provides a powerful, 2-step XML-based approach to enterprise data integration. Using MAPFORCE 2004, data architects can programmatically convert data into XML from any database, simply by drawing visual mappings from relational databases to any data model expressed in XML schema. MAPFORCE 2004 will then auto-generate the software program code required to programmatically marshal data from the source database to the target XML schema. Next, data can easily be transformed from one XML format to another, by visually drawing mappings between different XML schema data models. The MAPFORCE 2004 approach to enterprise data integration ensures compatibility and interoperability across different platforms, servers, programming languages and database environments.

Data integration projects rate among the most tedious developer tasks due to the volume of lines of infrastructure code, required to load, persist, validate, and perform other routine operations on data within the software application. MAPFORCE 2004 is the ultimate data integration productivity enhancer because it generates potentially thousands of lines of program code and XSLT stylesheets which would take hours to do manually, and can make the difference between project success and failure. MAPFORCE 2004 offers compelling value as the first retail-priced, all-purpose, XML-to-XML and database-to-XML mapper and code generator, which is not bound to a particular server or database implementation. MAPFORCE 2004 output code is non-proprietary, royalty-free, and easily used within a customized data integration or middleware application. MAPFORCE 2004 is the ideal power tool for today's data integration specialist.

Key features of MAPFORCE 2004 include:

Powerful User Interface - Define mappings by drawing lines between data structures, preview code and sample output with a single click.

Supports any Relational Database - MAPFORCE 2004 supports all commercial relational databases, including Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle9i (via OCI), or any database with ADO or ODBC connectivity.

Support for Multiple Inputs and Outputs - Advanced multi-pass data transformations (from schema, to schema to schema, etc.) can easily be set up simply by chaining stylesheets together in sequence. Target schemas can be populated from multiple data sources.

XSLT and Java Code Generation - Ideal for heterogeneous computing environments. Support for additional C#, C++ to be added within the year, and will be offered as a free upgrade to any MAPFORCE 2004 customer.

Rich Function Libraries - Handle the most advanced XML data mapping scenarios using a comprehensive data mapping function library, enabling the data architect to define mapping rules based on conditions, boolean logic, string operations, mathematical computations, or any user- defined function.

In addition to the introduction of MAPFORCE 2004, Altova has added numerous new features to its award-winning product family of XML development tools and content authoring tools. The key new features of XMLSPY 2004 include:

Microsoft Visual Studio(R) .NET(R) Integration - An added convenience for Microsoft Developers, enabling them to use the XMLSPY directly within their preferred editing environment.

XML Differencing - Visually compare files and directories in a highly configurable, XML-aware manner, which takes into account such variables as namespaces.

XPath 2.0 Analyzer - Experiment with a beta implementation of the W3C's XPath 2.0 working draft of May, 2003.

Completely re-implemented Database Utilities - Native support for Oracle databases, auto-generation of Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle 9i XML Schema extensions, generation of XML Schemas according to SQL/XML standard.

Numerous usability and performance enhancements

Key new features of AUTHENTIC 2004 and STYLEVISION 2004 (Stylesheet Designer) include:

Automatic Calculation of fields based on industry standard XPath for input in AUTHENTIC and output in HTML/PDF

Automatic Business Logic Validation based on industry standard XPath for input in AUTHENTIC

Support for more complex table structures with multiple rows and footers for input and output

Rich Input Formatting capabilities, can also be used for output in HTML/PDF

Date/Time control in AUTHENTIC for easy entry of date values

"The rapid adoption of new XML standards and XML-based applications is placing an increasing importance on XML development tools in the software development lifecycle of virtually all new business software applications," said Alexander Falk, President & CEO of Altova, Inc. "Altova remains committed to producing powerful mass-market XML development tools and components with comprehensive feature sets, in a timely and affordable manner."