XML editors have traditionally been modeled after the first SGML editor written in 1985, a long time before creating, managing, and distributing structured information was well understood. Now, nearly 20 years later, there are more choices for users interested in creating structured information. Specifically, this presentation discusses alternatives that include Web-based distributed collaborative XML document creation, "tag-free" tools, non-formatting structured editors, and even using common office tools in creating your XML documents.
So you know all about reading and parsing XML files, and even checking if they're well-formed and valid. Now, take a step into more advanced territory with this expose of two objects that let you dynamically create well-formed XML documents in your ASP.NET scripts.
I decided to simplify the DITA publishing process for myself by building a Windows interface to Ant. Ant was developed to allow programmers to write a simple build file in an XML format, and then process that XML file with the Ant build software.
During a recent development effort, one of our clients was alarmed at the conversion costs of the proposed XML-based content management system compared to the existing MS Word-based process. This was just one instance of an alarming trend of balking at XML-based systems in favor of using public web folders, indexed by some full-text search engine, as part of a local intranet. In the short run, these edit, drop, and index solutions have some appealing features, including low development and conversion costs. But they are short-lived systems that either wither from lack of functionality or rapidly outgrow their design.
In one of my past articles, A Pattern/Framework for Client/Server Programming in Java, I discussed a pattern for client/server development using java. That article does not answer exactly how the two parties, client and server, communicate with each other. We require an application-level protocol to do the talking between two entities. It sets up rules about how the two applications/entities communicate and understand each other over a network. If you happen to know the TCP/IP networking model or the OSI networking model, you will observe that network-based communication is implemented in layers, with the application layer at the top and the physical layer at the bottom. This article discusses issues you must face when implementing an application-level protocol and how XML proves to be an excellent choice to represent and implement the application-level protocol.
Advances in word processing technology now enable people to author simple documents in an interface they are familiar with. They no longer need to know a lot about markup, the schema in use, or be distracted by other concerns than writing what they want to write. This simpler interface, built upon a Microsoft "Smart Doc" solution provides support for authors who are focused on the content they are writing rather than the markup that describes it. At the same time, the author is producing valid XML that can be routed for review and approval, used for multi-channel delivery, or reused by other authors in the enterprise. Several scenarios of how such an authoring/management system could be used to solve business challenges are described.
New office document standards like the OpenDocument Format(ODF) and Office Open XML (OOXML), however, are making office document integration in business processes a reality. A key benefit of ODF and OOXML for developers is the reuse of existing standards.