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* 1. What about enabling the RPG compiler to use an XML document instead of a DDS to get a file definition ?

One of the major advantage is to enable newcomers programmers to embrace entirely all the development elements of the IBM i. The recent upgrade of RPG to the FREE FORM opens RPG to newcomers.
New programmers can use DDL for table definition but for display and printer file the use of DDS is definitely a bottleneck because it is an archaic format to define files. A complete adoption of RPG would need to integrate an open format such as XML to define any files. XML would naturally unleash all the coding process and highlight the value and investment in RPG.

This XML can be the same and unique source for:
• RPG field buffer definition
• UI definition & layout (moderns displays, documents, web services etc..)
• Any device definition elements

This would be a sane asset as it centralizes metadata definition and fulfills a multi-tier architecture.

Other advantages would be:
• Overcomes the limits of DDS (max-size 32k/format, field type, 9999 rows/SFL)
... 16mb per field could be used.
... Any accepted RPG field type could be integrated (Integer, Boolean, etc…)
• Overcomes the limits of DDS for screens or documents (size, position, layout, style, etc...)
... Defining grids side by side could be possible.
... Any GUI controls can be integrated.
• New meta-structure could be used:
... A field could be defined as an array
... or as a DS
• Enables long names for formats and fields.

And finally, this could also serve non-Open Access programs with a command that can create DSPF or PRTF from XML.

How important would you qualify this feature if IBM would implement it?

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Overall Value

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