See this IDG news service story that reports on Microsoft filing its latest form 8-K using the latest and greatest version of XBRL (extensible business reporting language), an emerging XML-based standard to define and exchange business and financial performance information.
Microsoft said it’s the first company to submit data using a new XBRL taxonomy released on Wednesday that allows the description of data according to U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). The taxonomy defines, for example, what tags should be used to label data such as “net profit.”
The advantage of XBRL is that it is machine-readable, and computers can use the tags to pull out comparable data from different companies from their filings.
Microsoft is one of about three dozen companies participating in a one-year pilot program to submit reports in XBRL, according to the SEC. The SEC has run a voluntary XBRL filing program since 2005.
When I look at the files, I get two impressions:
- Wow, think of the powerful queries you’ll be able to do with all this mark-up. XML really database-izes content.
- Wow, is XML verbose! I am so glad we are experts in compression at MarkLogic. When dealing with XML, you need to be.