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BannerML Overview

BannerML is a work in progress. The current description of BannerML applies to pre-release version 0.9, January 24, 2001. This version is available only for demonstration purposes.

BannerML stands for Banner Mark-up Language.

BannerML is a new XML-based language, proposed by Cogitum LC, for attaching additional text information to Internet banners. This language would mesh perfectly with Cogitumís Image Co-Tracker, a personal software product for clipping and storing banners on the userís computer.

With Co-Tracker the user can store banners with associated information and use this information for searching and decision-making about visiting the advertised site. Currently, Image Co-Tracker can collect certain information automatically, such as the date the banner was added to the userís database and the site where the banner was found. Users can also add their own comments and organize collected banners into categories. (Click here to see sample screen with Co-Tracker information). However, Image Co-Tracker cannot automatically store information related to the subject of the banner because that type of information does not exist.

The goal of BannerML is to provide advertisers the opportunity to attach additional information to a banner. This information could then be automatically grabbed and stored by Image Co-Tracker, and similar applications, and would be made readily available to the end user. Such information would include information about the advertiser, the product or service being advertised, related products, and so on. (Click here to see sample screen with BannerML information in Co-Tracker format and with Co-Tracker interface). These fields will be filled by the advertising company and will elevate the banner ad from a simple visual link to a self-sufficient object that represents the company or product in the userís database.

Users of Image Co-Tracker or similar applications will benefit greatly from the additional information associated with banners. Advertisers will benefit from the opportunity to provide important information about their company and products. The companies that place banner ads (e.g., DoubleClick, Advertising.com) will get an additional competitive advantage without additional investments. They may even be able to charge more for banners with BannerML support.

Whatís more, Web site developers will not need to make any changes in their current technology if they use banners provided companies such as DoubleClick and Advertising.com.

Cogitum proposes that banners supporting BannerML would include a simple logo that shows that fact.