XML Cooktop

By Deane Barker on January 11, 2006

I’m doing a project with Ektron CMS400.Net right now, and that system relies pretty heavily on XSL, which I hate. I really think XSL is a tool of devil, meant just to drive me mad. But I digress.

I needed a good little XSL authoring app. XMLSpy is the absolute gold standard in this space, but it’s also $400, which I didn’t really want to pay. Additionally, it’s huge. Hugely good, but bloated beyond belief.

The solution was a neat little open-source app called XML Cooktop. It was exactly what I needed: an interface that takes an XML file and an XSL file, and lets you transform the two with the click of a button. It shows you the raw HTML (well, XML — whatever) it produces, as well as an embedded view of how the HTML would look in a browser (IE, mind you, but that’s what I’m developing for in this case anyway).

Additionally, it has a nice little XPath debugger, kind of like The Regex Coach is for regular expressions.

It’s lightweight, free, and does one thing really well. Exactly what I needed.



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