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RE: A good XML editor for documents?

Hi Gustaf,

> Another customer is asking for the same, but in a web interface.

Have you seen Xopus? (http://xopus.com)

Xopus is a browser based XML editor designed for a non-technical target
audience. 

>  * It must support CSS. In particular, the 'display' property and CSS
2 
>    selectors.

The Xopus WYSIWYG view is based on XSLT. The output is HTML and you can
use CSS to further style the output. Xopus 3 doesn't allow you to use
display:none, but the upcoming Xopus 4 release will allow you to use the
full range of the host browser CSS capabilities.

>  * It must have graphical and source edit views. The graphical view
must 
>    support various forms of lists, tables, images and so on.

The HTML view allows you to display anything you can display using HTML.
Our Simple demo has all of the above:
http://xopus.com/files/demo/examples/Simple/start.html

The Recipe demo is an example of semantic XML displayed as slightly more
complex HTML:
http://xopus.com/files/demo/examples/Recipe/start.html

>  * It must support DTD schemas.
>  * It must have DTD validation.
>  * It must actively prevent grammar errors in the graphical view.

It supports validation using XML Schema (not DTD unfortunately, but
conversion using Trang works reasonably well). Xopus supports
prevalidation: it will prevent any action that would make the document
invalid. It will do so in any view, as well as for actions initiated by
the DOM API.

>  * It should offer spell checking in many languages (Swedish in 
>    particular).

We can import Open Office spellcheck dictionaries into the Xopus
spellchecker. We have not done Swedish yet, but that shouldn't be a
problem.

>  * It should be possible to write macros and develop custom forms for 
>    input, and connect macros to toolbar buttons or menus.

We don't expect our users to create macros themselves. However, as an
integrator you have a lot of control over the behavior and look and feel
of Xopus. Adding toolbar buttons that manipulate the DOM using your own
algorithm is quite straightforward. 

Xopus also allows you to add interaction to the WYSIWYG view by exposing
the XML DOM to HTML event handlers. The drop down menus in the Recipe
demo are an example of that.

> If there *is* an XML editing plugin for web browsers, I bet it's not
very
> customizable.

You can read more about the customization options of Xopus here:
http://xopus.com/documentation/developer-guide/reference/xopus-api.html

Best regards,

Laurens van den Oever
CEO, Xopus BV

http://xopus.com
+31 70 4452345
KvK 27301795


-----Original Message-----
From: Gustaf Liljegren [mailto:[email protected]] 
Sent: woensdag 14 januari 2009 13:37
To: [email protected]
Subject:  A good XML editor for documents?

Coming back to XML publishing after a new year's absence. In 2001, I
helped a customer switch from tedious PageMaker work to a DTP system
built on Xmetal and XEP, with custom DTD and FO stylesheets. It's time
for an update now. Having been away from graphical XML editors for a
long while, I can't tell what options there are besides Xmetal on
today's market. But I can tell my requirements and hope that some of you
will point me right:

  * It must have graphical and source edit views. The graphical view
must support various forms of lists, tables, images and so on.
  * It must support DTD schemas.
  * It must support CSS. In particular, the 'display' property and CSS 2
selectors.
  * It must have DTD validation.
  * It must actively prevent grammar errors in the graphical view.

And some less important things:

  * It should offer spell checking in many languages (Swedish in
particular).
  * It should be possible to write macros and develop custom forms for
input, and connect macros to toolbar buttons or menus.

Another customer is asking for the same, but in a web interface. I'm
sceptic. In my view, the strength of a good XML editing environment is
(apart from content presentation separation) the ability to customize,
by adding macros to speed up common tasks, or validating content. If
there *is* an XML editing plugin for web browsers, I bet it's not very
customizable. What do you think?

Gustaf

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