17. Streaming API for XML
This chapter focuses on the Streaming API for XML (StAX), a streaming Java-based, event-driven, pull-parsing API for reading and writing XML documents. StAX enables you to create bidrectional XML parsers that are fast, relatively easy to program, and have a light memory footprint.
StAX is the latest API in the JAXP family, and provides an alternative to SAX, DOM, TrAX, and DOM for developers looking to do high-performance stream filtering, processing, and modification, particularly with low memory and limited extensibility requirements.
To summarize, StAX provides a standard, bidirectional pull parser interface for streaming XML processing, offering a simpler programming model than SAX and more efficient memory management than DOM. StAX enables developers to parse and modify XML streams as events, and to extend XML information models to allow application-specific additions. More detailed comparisons of StAX with several alternative APIs are provided below, in Comparing StAX to Other JAXP APIs (page 594).