The WWW contains a huge amount of documents. Some of them share the subject, but are generated by different people or even organizations. To guarantee the interchange of such documents, we can use XML. This allows to share documents that do not have the same structure. However, it makes difficult to understand the core of such heterogeneous documents (in general, schema is not available). In this paper, we offer a characterization and algorithm to obtain the midpoint (in terms of a resemblance function) of a set of semi-structured, heterogeneous documents without optional elements. The trivial case of midpoint would be the common elements to all documents. Nevertheless, in cases with several heterogeneous documents this may result in an empty set. Thus, we consider that those elements present in a given amount of documents belong to the midpoint. Once we have such midpoint, the algorithm is generalized for the obtaining of repetitions and optional elements. Thus, a exact schema can always be found generating optional elements. However, the exact schema of the whole set may result in overspecialization (lots of optional elements), which would make it useless.
CitationAbelló, A., De Palol, X., Hacid, M. "Approximating the DTD of a set of XML documents". 2005.
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