The Extensible Markup Language (XML) is a general-purpose specification for creating custom markup languages. It is classified as an extensible language because it allows its users to define their own elements. Its primary purpose is to facilitate the sharing of structured data across different information systems, particularly via the Internet, and it is used both to encode documents and to serialize data. In the latter context, it is comparable with other text-based serialization languages such as JSON and YAML.
View Topic History
It started as a simplified subset of the Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML), and is designed to be relatively human-legible. By adding semantic constraints, application languages can be implemented in XML. These include XHTML, RSS, MathML, GraphML, Scalable Vector Graphics, MusicXML, and thousands of others. Moreover, XML is sometimes used as the specification language for such application languages.
XML is recommended by the World Wide Web Consortium. It is a fee-free open standard. The W3C recommendation specifies both the lexical grammar and the requirements for parsing.