W3C XForms ”XML powered Web forms ”is an overhaul to HTML forms from 1993. On-line forms are critical to electronic commerce on the Internet, and the HTML forms design from 1993 is now beginning to show its age. The advent of XML on the Web and the subsequent move to Web Services as a means of connecting disparate information technologies to deliver end-to-end customer solutions have now made XML documents central to the fabric of the Web.
XForms leverages the power of using XML in modeling, collecting, and serializing user input. The XForms design enables simple browser-based interfaces for creating and editing XML documents with the client providing interactive support for ensuring that the XML document is valid. Thus, XForms enables the last mile of connecting the end user to Web Services.
XForms user agents provide an easy-to-use browser-based interface that enables the end-user to interact directly with information technologies that have been published as Web Services. As the Web moves from being a desktop-only phenomenon to a means of ubiquitous electronic access, Web transactions need to be available from a variety of end-user access devices ranging from desktop computers to smart phones. The XForms- authored interface is well suited for delivery to a variety of interaction modalities and end-user devices, thus assuring content developers the widest audience for their transaction-based applications.
From the user's perspective, XForms revolutionizes the way business-critical information is collected and published on the Web. A key consequence of this evolution is that information technologists can continue to model business data using abstract structures that are amenable to machine processing; XForms binds a user-friendly Web browser interface to such abstract XML models, thereby empowering the end user to edit and update these abstract structures. In this sense, XForms enables a standard Web browser to associate editable views to the underlying XML models. This ability to view and edit XML documents from within a standard Web browser is likely to prove a key empowering technology.