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From Christopher Oliver <>
Subject Flow views, scratchpad taglib, and writing transformers
Date Mon, 24 Mar 2003 17:55:08 GMT
Yesterday, I was trying to create another view for the flow layer, 
similar to a subset of JSTL, using Jexl

I started with Marcus Crafter's JPathTransformer, and in the process of 
writing JexlTransformer, I also attempted to add support for for-each 
and choose/when/otherwise to JPathTransformer (both extend 
AbstractSAXTransformer). I also added support for expanding xpath 
expressions inside attribute values (similar to the way JSTL's 
expression language works). Oh yeah, another thing I changed is to make 
the continuation available as an XPath variable so you don't need 
jpath:continuation anymore.

Anyway, I was trying to get both of these to be equal in functionality 
with Velocity and the JPath Xsp logic sheet.

I've placed a copy of the source code and samples of the same template 
using jexl, jxpath, and velocity here:

As I was doing this, I kept thinking what a poor framework 
AbstractSAXTransformer seemed to be (uses implementation inheritance, 
has protected variables with side-effects, e.g. ignoreEventsCount and 
ignoreHooksCount, no real API), and that a much better API for writing 
transformers was needed.

Then I came across Volker Schmitt's taglib in the scratchpad which looks 
like exactly what I wanted:

In my opinion, given the Cocoon flow layer and Cocoon's support for XSL, 
we don't don't need extensive tag libraries, but instead just the 
equivalent of a subset of JSTL core flow tags, and its expression language:


In other words, just enough to navigate through the contents of the 
"bean" object passed from the flow layer, in order to render output.

This is equivalent to the functionality Ovidiu included in the jpath Xsp 
logic sheet.

And this is the functionality that JexlTransformer and JXPathTransformer 
provide, with Jexl and JXPath as the expression languages, respectively.

I would like to reimplement JexlTransformer and JXPathTransformer using 
  taglib (if anyone want's to help, let me know).

Assuming this works, I'd also like to reimplement XMLFormTransformer 
using taglib and move taglib to the core as a proper API for writing 
transformers in the future.




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