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LinuxFocus.org: Using XML and XSLT to build LinuxFocus.org

Sep 22, 2001, 20:11 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Egon Willighagen)
"The system used for document and translation management in the LinuxFocus project consists of several ASCII files, including resdb.txt, issuedb.txt and maindb.txt. These files have a fixed format, and they're used to generate web pages. However, they are difficult to extend, and the separated nature of the data makes it hard to manage all the information available for an article.

LinuxFocus did not automatically generate much web content when I started the new database. As an editor on the Dutch team, I was eager to have the index.html files on the web site dynamically generated. Editing several HTML files each time a new article was translated took a lot of effort and caused many broken links. Therefore, I wanted a new system to which I could add information easily, and from which I could easily generate index pages for the web site. I started working on it sometime in the summer of 2000.

The choice for XML was a bit arbitrary. Suggestions had been made to use a relational database, but I was experienced in XML and preferred a system of text based files. It soon turned out that a new numbering scheme would be useful, because the database could then use one type of ID instead of the two or three schemes then in use. Guido Socher did all the renumbering, which was quite an effort (my thanks!)."

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