Phil wrote in subject “Using VB and CFRONT to insert a record”: — QUOTE — I have heard that they [Navision] will be incorporating Biztalk and more XML features. I think this is a great move since I see Biztalk as a key part of the future of B2B transactions. I already see many instances in my company’s current projects where Biztalk would be a perfect solution if it was more established. Anyone else have thoughts on Biztalk as related to Navision? — UNQUOTE — For those who are not familiar with XML and BizTalk, let me give you a short definition of what it is all about: XML is an enhancement of HTML. It enhances HTML by defining new tags. Here some example of the official Navision Sales-Order: (Hope the tags get through!) First comes the Sales Header … — 101005 <Your_Reference>Michael</Your_Reference> <Order_Date>2001-01-11</Order_Date> <Prices_Including_VAT>No</Prices_Including_VAT> … — … followed by Sales-Lines … — - <Line_No>10000</Line_No> <Item_No>101005</Item_No> <Shipment_Date>2001-01-11</Shipment_Date> ANTWERP Conference Table <Unit_of_Measure>Piece</Unit_of_Measure> 4 <Unit_Price>420.4</Unit_Price> <VAT_pct>N/A</VAT_pct> - <currency_Amount>1597.52</currency_Amount> <Amount_Including_VAT>1996.90</Amount_Including_VAT> <Gross_Weight>28.06</Gross_Weight> <Net_Weight>24.4</Net_Weight> <Units_per_Parcel>0</Units_per_Parcel> <Unit_Volume>0.9</Unit_Volume> <Serial_No>N/A</Serial_No> <Inv_Discount_Amount>0</Inv_Discount_Amount> <Transport_Method>Air</Transport_Method> <Qty_per_Unit_of_Measure>1</Qty_per_Unit_of_Measure> … etc. Your web-browser of course is not able to interprete Tags like <Amount_Including_VAT> and therefore will simply ignore them. This leads to step 2: If you want to make your Web-browser “understand” what a tag means and how it has to be displayed (e.g. Sales header on top, and sales lines as a table) you have to create a Style-sheet which by definition has the extension .XSL. Step 3: BizTalk is a freely formed organization of software developers (amongst them Navision) who came to the conclusion that certain business transactions can be standardized. For example: A sales line will always contain an ItemNo, Description, Qty and amount. It doesn’t make sense if different developers implement the same kind of transaction (like a sales-order) differently. Therefore BizTalk defines standards and puts some stress to the developers by telling them exactly how a standard exchange file (e.g. the XML file to exchange stock quotes or sales orders) should look like. EDI/EDIFACT was the first step in this direction and it can be assumed that BizTalk with XML will replace EDIFACT in future. For more information check out I’m currently involved in a project where b2b exchange has to be done with XML. I will start programming in november. As I wanted to be as close as possible to the coming Fin 3.0 standards, Navision DK recomended to stick with their Example XML files they have published at However these XML’s are very young (september 2000) and Navision DK warned me that they might change. Anyway. As usual, Navision didn’t fully complete their job as they didn’t publish an XSL file together with the XML. Therefore my question to the audience is: Did someone already develop a XSL for the Navision Sales-Order? If not, (what I assume) I will develop one by myselves. If anybody is interested, please let me know. Marcus Marcus Fabian phone: +41 79 4397872

An interesting article about Navision and BizTalk can be found at: Marcus Fabian phone: +41 79 4397872

How do I make a style-sheet?

Good question. As there are no editor-tools available yet, the only chance is a normal text-editor. Marcus Marcus Fabian phone: +41 79 4397872