Xml data from ywam.org
XML Data Feeds From the YWAM.org Database
When XML first came out as a standard I was curious to understand what it was all about. It seemed that so many saw great potential in the technology so I wanted to wrap my brain around what it was all about. So after some heavy reading and a few books later I also began to see the real potential behind XML.
Simply put html describes page layout out and xml describes information.
Ok so I can describe information with XML but how does that help. Well XML by is self is a nice way to describe information but the real power comes when you combine it with something else XSLT. XSLT is short for Extensible Style sheet Language Transformations. If you have ever done a "mail-merge" then you will understand the concept. You have a data document (your xml file) and you have template your (XSLT) and when you run your merge you get the result of two combined. XSLT however is more then just a template file it's a language for defining how transform xml into something else. So your information or data in XML can be transformed into HTML, XML, plain text, or something else.
Here are some of the uses that I see for XML: Write your web page once as an xml file then transform it for different clients: transform it to html for browser -- transform it into a different layout for pda's or cell phones. Same text(data) just different layouts. When some new device that comes out that needs a different layout just create a new XSLT (stylesheet) and transform the XML. I'm already doing this on ywam.org! Here is the xml file here is how it looks after it has been transformed
Here is another application -- data feeds from ywam.org -- when we change our base e-mail address it's seems like there are so many sites where we need to change the information. Our base web site, our national web site, ywam.org, uofn.edu and the list goes on. Usually someone gets left out or forgotten. So how about keep one central database and just feeding the information from there. That way we make the change one and everyone feeding from that database will automatically be updated. Well this is now a reality! I had this idea for about 4 years now and I've just been waiting for the rest team to catch on.
Here are a few examples of this in operation:
YWAM Europe (all location, school and opportunity data comes from ywam.org)
--Colin 15:24, 6 July 2007 (BST)
- Operating Locations (bases)
- Named Ministries
- Staff Opportunities
- UofN Registered Schools
Filtering - How do I Get the Data That I Need?
The XML feeds from YWAM.org can be easily filtered so you can quickly get only the data that you need!
For example the Staff Opportunities data set can be filter by
- Operating Location(Base)
UofN Registered Schools can be filterd by:
- Course Number
- Operating Location
So how do filter the data - easy ... when making the request simply add the correct paramaters to the URL request.
staffopps_by_name.xml?fid=2 - Would return only the staff opportunities for Europe (field id 2 = Europe)
staffopps_by_name.xml?cid=52 - Would return only the staff opportunities for England (country id 52 = England)
So how do I know what the the Field(fid), Region(rid), Country or Base(bid) IDs are so that I can use them for filtering?
Simply request the xml feed for Field, Region, Country or Location and you will see both the ID and the proper name then you can use the ID number when making the request.
How do I do This on My Site?
For More Information
For more information about XML feeds from ywam.org contact us.