The goal of XML is to provide publishers with Agile Content. “Agile,” when used as an adjective, is defined as: 1) able to move quickly and easily and 2) quick-witted or shrewd.
For publishing, agility primarily deals with making content readily machine (computer) operable, while maintain it in a state humans can understand. Agile content systems allow a publisher to:
· Load content as-is
· Process and transform content
· Leverage the structure (or lack of) in content
· Query and analyze content
· Deliver to multiple formats easily
· Enable connectivity to the ecosphere of content users
· Rapidly prototype new content products at low cost to test ROI scenarios
· Getting to agile includes:
o Removal of content silos
o Choosing one or more content structures, typically XML
o Enriching content through application of metadata (literally data about data)
o Such as adding structure for chapters, and/or
o Semantic (descriptive) tagging of images within content
Agility is generally achieved through conversion of publisher content to XML and storage of that XML in a single repository specifically designed for housing, manipulating and delivering that XML via connectivity.
Connectivity includes the publisher’s website, and direct selling of Content (especially as eBooks) to users for maximum profitability, and leverages application environments, such as Amazon, Apple, Google, Blackberry, Facebook, Sony and Barnes and Noble to deliver content where desired. Publishers must address all these areas well to ensure profitability.