I just got into my Boston hotel room for XML 2006, a conference I've attended in one form or another every year since it was called SGML 95. On Thursday afternoon I'm giving a presentation titled Relational database integration with RDF/OWL on a project I've written about several times (, ) here; I'll be sure to mention the help I got from the excellent comments for those entries of my weblog and several leading up to them. I was also asked to keep a presentation I have on XHTML2 and Publishing warm in case someone in the Publishing track doesn't show up. It's based on some research I did for the PRISM group on what XHTML2 could do for magazine publishers and other general interest content publishers. (Quite a bit, as it turned out.)
On Tuesday afternoon I'll host a panel on Agile XML Development featuring David Carver, Tony Coates, and Claudia Lucia Jimenez Guarin. (I hope that Tony brings his electric ukulele to Boston, but not necessarily to this panel.) I'll host another panel on Thursday morning in the Enterprise XML track in which Ralph Hodgson will present on Ontology-Based XML Schemas for Interoperability between Systems and Tools (I've already mentioned how much I'm looking forward to that) and Cheryl Connors, Mary Ann Malloy, and Ed Masek of the MITRE Corporation will talk about Enabling Secure Interoperability among Federated National Entities. I almost ended up on a panel on the FEMA Common Alerting Protocol, but luckily I didn't, because I barely know how to spell FEMA.
It's always both fun and frustrating looking at the program and picking out what I'm going to see. The frustration comes from seeing simultaneous talks that I want to attend— I'm already sorry that Michael Kay's talk on Meta-stylesheets takes place at the same time as the talk from MITRE folk, and the XML Pipeline Processing panel is in the same time slot as the Agile XML Development panel. The only other talk on OWL is at the same time as my own, probably because mine was accepted as a "late-breaking" entry and missed the initial coordination of talk themes.
Wednesday, I know that Marc Basch's Case Study: Managing XML for a Global Content Delivery Platform will be good, because I did some peripheral work on that system while at LexisNexis, and Marc and a lot of sharp people have put together a good system that tackles some difficult (and common, for an international company) problems. Betty Harvey has taken a hard look at an issue that I and many others have wondered about: UML from an XML Perspective—Is the Hype Justified? As an Innodata Isogen employee, though, I should really go to the Panel on Content Management System APIs that competes with Betty.
I won't lay out my whole plan of what to see, because doing it on the fly and wandering from room to room is part of the fun. Just hanging out with people and finding out the real inside gossip on standards development, business relationships, and secret personal projects is the best part of the conference; I probably won't get around to any tourism or evening work on my own personal projects, as I usually do on business trips, because I'd rather just hang out eating and drinking with people. I've often said that I'd rather go to this annual conference than a high school reunion, because I'll see more old friends there. And now, back to mumbling through the slides for my presentation...