Home » Business Automation Glossary » YAML (YAML Ain’t Markup Language)
YAML (YAML Ain’t Markup Language)

What is YAML?

YAML, which stands for “YAML Ain’t Markup Language,” is a human-readable data serialization language. It is commonly used for configuration files and in applications where data is being stored or transmitted. YAML is designed to be easily read by humans but also easily parsed by machines, making it a versatile format for data interchange.

Why Use YAML?

YAML is favored for its clarity and simplicity, which makes it an excellent choice for configuration files that need to be edited by humans. It’s less verbose than other formats like XML, and it avoids the use of brackets, which can make it cleaner and more readable.

Key Features of YAML

  1. Readability: Designed with human readability in mind, using familiar indentation-based nesting.
  2. Simplicity: No need for closing tags or braces, reducing clutter in the document.
  3. Flexibility: Can represent scalars, sequences, and mappings (equivalent to primitives, arrays/lists, and dictionaries/objects in programming languages).
  4. Language-Independent: Can be used with all programming languages that have libraries for parsing YAML.

Examples of YAML Usage

  • Configuration Files: Many software applications use YAML files for setting up parameters and options.
  • Data Storage: Storing data in a format that’s easy to read and write by both humans and computers.
  • DevOps: In tools like Docker and Kubernetes, YAML files are used to define and manage containers and orchestration configurations.