BDL names and JSON element names

To identify elements, JSON standards use different format as Genero BDL variable names.

As in many other programming languages, Genero BDL variables are named with simple identifiers. These identifiers are case-insensitive, must start with a letter or underscore, and cannot contain special characters such as spaces.

By default, JSON/BDL element name matching is case-insensitive. For example, if the Genero BDL record member is defined as CustNo, and the JSON data string contains the "custno":999 name/value pair, the value will be assigned. However, since Genero BDL record member names are used as-is to write JSON data, is it strongly recommended to define the Genero BDL records with the exact names used in JSON data string. Since JSON is case-sensitive, make sure the names of the Genero BDL record members match exactly the names expected in the resulting JSON data string: CustNo will be different from custNo.


JSON specifications allow you to define element names with characters that cannot be used in Genero BDL identifiers. For example, a JSON element name can be "" or "customer:name". To work around this issue, use the json_name attribute when defining the BDL variable.

If the JSON element name cannot be defined as a Genero BDL variable identifier, it is possible to define the BDL variable with the json_name attribute, to specify the exact name of the corresponding JSON element.

In the next example, the BDL variable cust_name will be mapped to the JSON element "Customer Name":
DEFINE cust_name INTEGER ATTRIBUTES(json_name="Customer Name")

When converting JSON to BDL structures, elements in the JSON string that do not match an Genero BDL record member are ignored; no error is thrown if there is no corresponding Genero BDL member.