Graduate Special Topics in Computer Science

NOTE: for descriptions of standard graduate computer science courses, see Graduate Course Descriptions.

G22.3033-002 XML for Java Developers

The eXtensible Markup Language (XML) is a platform-independent data representation, which may be viewed as a simplified version of SGML designed for the Web. Java Technology and XML are complementary: XML provides a family of technologies that enable portable data, and Java technology enables portable, maintainable code. Together, XML and Java technologies provide comprehensive support for data representation and exchange, and promote a new generation of Presentation Oriented Publishing (POP), Message Oriented Middleware (MOM), and Application Configuration services for the enterprise. While XML-based POP services are being layered on top of J2EE's Client Container, Java Server Faces, and JSP/Servlet component models, XML-based MOM services provide uniform access to application server and Enterprise Extension and Integration technologies including Business Process Management (BPM), Business to Business Integration (B2Bi), Enterprise Application Integration (EAI), Legacy Extension (LE), and Enterprise Information Integration (EII). As they become core components of the upcoming Web Services platforms (i.e., Sun's Open Net Environment, Oracle's Dynamic Services, IBM's WebSphere platform, and Microsoft .NET), XML-based services provide a foundation for modern component-based and device-independent eBusiness via wire/exchange format protocols (e.g., SOAP, ebXML, BizTalk, WS-Security), description protocols (e.g., XML Schemas, WSDL, Process Flow Orchestration, BPEL4WS), discovery protocols (e.g., WS-Inspection, UDDI), and presentation/integration facilities.

This course is designed for programmers already familiar with the Java language and class libraries. All instruction and development will be based on the J2SE 1.4.1 (or 1.4.2 Beta), and the latest practical W3C, and WS-I standards. Rather than solely focusing the presentation on the various XML features and technologies, the course illustrates how the use of such XML technologies and applications meshes with the modern approach at building XML-based comprehensive business applications. The course provides an in-depth coverage of XML-based Java-enabled functionality. Students will learn how to specify, and manipulate XML data from Java programs using existing implementations of the current W3C specifications for the Domain Object Model (DOM) and Simple API for XML SAX). Through a set of assignments/projects, students will implement the various components of a sample XML web-enabled and Java-based enterprise application. Students will gain practical exposure to the various XML commercial toolsets being developed by various third-party vendors including BEA, IBM, Microsoft, Sun, and WebMethods.

G22.3033-003 Electronic Commerce - Strategies & Technologies

Pre-requisites: students are expected to have previous course and/or practical experience with network protocols, database systems, and web interfaces.

The popular image of eCommerce is that of a splashy web page, full of products and advertisements. In fact, that web page is the public fac,ade to a remarkable system that connects front-end presentation of products and services, personalized to user preferences, to a back-end of databases used to manage product inventories, customer profiles, transaction histories, payments, and more.

The permeation of Information Technologies throughout the eCommerce transaction and the internal business practices of the organization have become more generally known as eBusiness. The transformation of the Internet and related protocols to support such practices is what we will investigate in this course.

Commerce was not a design goal or even a remote consideration of the early Internet. What we are observing is a fascinating, historic high-stakes technical re-tooling of the underlying protocols and practices of the Internet to support robust and secure digital transactions, and their subsequent use within core human activities in business, government, education, and beyond. We have moved from an environment that emphasized casual communication and file sharing to one that supports the electronic transfer of funds, and the expectations have changed accordingly.

There is now a demand for comprehensive user authentication, encrypted communication, and digital certification that provably connects people to on-line actions. The subsequent need to balance the required security with an acceptable level of privacy remains as a challenge. How much privacy are users willing to sacrifice in exchange for security and convenience features?

The global scope of the Internet, readily crossing national boundaries, exacerbates such issues. How can uniform standards and governing legislation be enacted and enforced? This is particularly nettlesome, given the relatively anarchic early governing structure of the Internet. While the technical issues of the protocol transformations are challenging, the political issues can be even more difficult to manage. We will restrict ourselves, for the most part, to the more comprehensible technical issues, pointing out social, legal, or political problems that hinder development along the way.

See the detailed description on the course homepage


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