xml question

    Jan 15 2006 | 1:55 pm
    I need to represent the content of pattr generated XML files in a
    human-readable form, eg. as abulated and properly line-fed ASCII
    files that can be emailed and read on any computer. I guess I can
    write a parser in Java or Ruby, but this is going to be a fairly
    boring excercise, plus I have a gut feeling that I'll be reinventing
    the wheel.
    I had a look at off-the-shelf XML editors, but the Oxygen thing I
    found is huge, much too sophisticated and expensive.
    Anyone have tips/shortcuts/brilliant ideas?

    • Jan 15 2006 | 9:19 pm
      Converting XML to other formats is the function of XSLT, which comes bundled
      with oXygen. Although oXygen is large and not cheap, if you want to do this
      yourself, it is probably the best way of doing it. Thankfully the app comes
      with a free fully functional 30-day demo mode, so if you want to try it
      first, then you can do so at no cost.
      Just stripping markup and formatting text is one of the standard tasks in
      XSLT, and a recipe is given in Sal Mangano's "XSLT Cookbook", O'Reilly, ISBN
      XSLT also makes the trip to HTML easy if you want formatted output, and
      oXygen comes with some nice examples. If you want to go to PostScript or
      Acrobat PDF, then it gets a big harder, using FO, which is again part of
      oXygen. You can also go to RTF if you prefer, using free 3rd party tools.
      Dr Howard Oakley
      The Works columnist for MacUser magazine (UK)
    • Jan 16 2006 | 6:45 pm
      Or, you could probably grab some of the open-source xslt libraries
      from apache-jakarta.
      They work great, they are considered the standard of xslt
      implementations in the java world.