AXEL Version 1.3.2

AXEL is developped by Stéphane Sire at Oppidoc.

The first version of AXEL and XTiger XML is the results of research efforts at the MEDIA research group at EPFL and in collaboration with project WAM at INRIA, Centre de Recherche Public Henri Tudor and Useful Web Sàrl.

AXEL is released as free software, under the terms of the LGPL version 2.1, please make sure that you read the license file in distrib/COPYING. You are welcome to join our efforts to improve the library and the specification at any time and to become part of the contributors.

Contact: Stéphane Sire

AXEL for the impatient

Read the executive summary about XTiger XML document templates and AXEL.

Try the demonstration editor. Once you have opened it in your browser, select a template folder and a template file name using the two popup menus next to the Preselection label; then click on the Transform button to generate the corresponding editor. Start editing a document, and then use the Dump button to see the current XML content of the editor at any time.

You can take some reading with you as you can download the XML Prague 2010 article.

Where to start ?

First, you should read the user's manual and the FAQ and run the auto-test to check that the library is running (note that you must reload the auto-test each time you run it, otherwise it may report failures, this is a known issue). You should run the auto-test from within each browser you want to support. For some browsers, if you get an error accessing files, you should launch the auto-test from behind a Web server.

The best way to learn the library is to experiment with the sample templates and applications which are distributed with it. If you already know the library you may have a look at the CHANGELOG file.

Template authors should read the XTiger XML language specification. It is a good idea to look at the source of the demonstration templates in the templates folder. With Firefox you can click on the Source button in the demonstration editor to display the source of the current template. You can also write your own templates and test them with the demonstration editor by entering their path and clicking on Visualize.

Web application developers should read the tutorial in addition to the above links. There are some instructions about the use of some primitive editors like 'video' or 'photo' in corresponding HOWTO files in the documentation folder. You can also find useful information into the wiki

Plugins or Filters developers can consult the HOWTO files which are in the documentation folder in addition to the above links. They can also look at the existing plugin or filter source files in the src/plugins or src/filter folders.

Related projects

You should also check the AXEL-FORMS extensions to AXEL. They provide additional constructs to create more form-oriented user interfaces. They also provide microformat instructions to easily embed AXEL into web pages. If your are looking for a fully XML-oriented backend you may also check the Oppidum framework.

Mailing list

Check the axel-dev mailing list for assistance

Project layout

This web site is published from the GitHub repository of the project. If you check out the repository you will get the following folders :

axel
All the files ready for deploying AXEL on a server, axel.js is generated from the build.lib target of the ant script in the scripts folder.
contribs
Third party tools and contributions.
data
sample XML data files; some of which can be loaded inside the sample templates found in the templates folder, for instance using the editor application which is in the editor folder.
docs
Some documentation. The XTiger XML language specification is available on its own repository.
editor
A demonstration editor (editor.xhtml) built with the library. If you launch it from your local file system and if you follow the instructions on disabling security restrictions on Firefox, you can use it to open templates and XML data files from your local file system. This is a convenient way to test and maintain template files. It also includes each library file individually from the src folder and not from the axel folder, this is because we use it to debug the library.
tutorial
A developer-oriented tutorial that shows how to use the API to transform templates and load/save XML data.
scripts
Ant script to automate the generation of the minified library. The server folder contains a basic server in Ruby which can be used to serve the full distribution. It has been put here for demonstration purpose and to test the integration between the library and a server. In particular it is used to test photo or file upload with the 'photo' and 'file' plugins.
src
The source code of the library. The axel.js file in the axel folder is generated from the content of this folder using the ant buid.lib target defined in the scripts folder.
templates
Xtiger XML template files.
test
Test folder. This folder contains some tests targeted at AXEL library or plugin developers. It's purpose is to simplify library testing on different browsers and platform architectures.

Last update: 2013-05-31