House builds an XML foundation

House builds an XML foundation

The House of Representatives has drafted 110 Extensible Markup Language document type definitions for its legislative activities.

The public-domain DTDs cover categories ranging from bills and resolutions to deletions and anomalous document structures.

No date has been set, however, for starting to format the congressional materials in XML, which would ease searching and reusing the volumes of legislative output. Current searches at www.house.gov are limited to bill numbers and keywords.

The DTDs define the elements and relationships of what a legislative body produces, as distinct from, say, DTDs that already exist for the automotive, banking and other industries.

Sample files of the draft congressional DTDs, which are viewable with Microsoft Internet Explorer 5 or higher browser versions, appear at xml.house.gov.

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