WFDB Software Package 10.6.2

File: <base>/xml/README (3,329 bytes)
file: README		G. Moody	2 July 2010
      			Last revised:  6 October 2010

This directory contains software for interchange between WFDB native formats
and XML formats.  It includes:

wfdb.dtd	a DTD for WFDB-XML, an XML schema for
		expressing the contents of WFDB
		header and annotation files

wfdb.xsl	an XSLT style sheet that a web browser
		(or other XSLT engine) can use to transform
		a WFDB-XML header or annotation file into
		a human-readable representation of its

heaxml.c	a C program that converts a native
		WFDB .hea file into a WFDB-XML file

annxml.c	a C program that converts a native
		WFDB annotation file into a WFDB-XML file

xmlhea.c	a C program that converts a WFDB-XML header
		file into a native WFDB .hea file

xmlann.c	a C program that converts a WFDB-XML annotation
		file into a native WFDB annotation file

xmlproc.h	generic functions for processing XML files, shared by
		xmlhea and xmlann

Makefile	a 'make' description file for automating the
		process of compiling and installing this software

A copy of the most recent version of wfdb.dtd is posted on PhysioNet at
This on-line copy is referenced in WFDB-XML files generated by heaxml
and annxml.

Note that these programs require the WFDB library version 10.5.4 or
later, and that those that read WFDB-XML files also require libexpat
(  To compile them, install gcc, make,
the WFDB software package, and libexpat if you have not already done so,
then run 'make' from within this directory.  If you don't have 'make',
you can compile these programs manually;  see 'Makefile' for the commands
needed to do so.

It is not necessary to download the native WFDB files in order to use
heaxml and annxml, since they can obtain their inputs directly from
the PhysioNet web server via HTTP.

For example, these commands:
    heaxml mitdb/200
    annxml mitdb/200 atr
produce the WFDB-XML files
in the current directory.

If you put a copy of wfdb.xsl in the same directory with these output
files, you should be able to view the HTML generated from them via
wfdb.xsl by opening them with Firefox or another web browser that
incorporates an XSLT engine.

Try running heaxml on a mimicdb or mimic2db record, for
example like this:
    heaxml mimic2db/a40006/a40006
This command produces
which includes information about each segment in the
multi-segment record as well as a summary of the entire
record.  The inverse operation, which can be performed by reading
the .xml file using xmlhea, generates a complete set of segment
headers together with the master header in this case.

Warning: the XML outputs generated by these commands are huge.  There is a
good reason that I don't keep these data in XML format on PhysioBank!

There are no 'datxml' or 'xmldat' applications to convert signal files
to and from WFDB-XML format, because the standard 'rdsamp' and 'wrsamp'
can perform these conversions.  Use rdsamp's '-X' option to generate
WFDB-XML output;  wrsamp can recognize WFDB-XML input automatically, so
no special option is required.  WFDB-XML signal format is the CSV format
that can be produced by rdsamp's '-c' option, wrapped within an XML header
and trailer.