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From Tony Collen <>
Subject Re: Need A Better Understanding of XSP Role
Date Tue, 21 Dec 2004 03:07:01 GMT
David wrote:
> I've built a Cocoon site that I'm happy with and now I need to build a
> completely new and different site, and I'm reading about XSP to see if it
> could make this new site better.  For example, in my first site, I used the
> Cocoon protocol (cocoon:/ and cocoon://) in conjunction with cinclude to
> insert dynamic elements, e.g. lists of document titles, etc.  This technique
> worked, but only because I the programmer was the only person maintaining
> the site, and I understood these things.
> Conversely in my new site I want a more "JSP" kind of architecture in that
> non-programmers will need to do some page creation and I want to give them
> some 'tags' they can use to insert dynamic code into their pages, and I'm
> wondering if XSP could give me the ability to create this sort of 'taglib',
> like in JSP of course.
> So, then, if my content is in xml files on disk, and I have xsl
> transformation, where do xsp tags fit in?  I realize that they go in xsp
> files, but if that's the case, do the xsp files 'start' the pipeline instead
> of the xml files as I'm accustomed to doing?  At what point do the xml files
> enter the pipeline?  I can't see how XSP tags are used by
> non-programmers...or perhaps I should say I can't understand how to
> incorporate what to me looks like a 'third tier' on top of what appears to
> be a perfectly adequate two-tier content-presentation architecture.  Any
> insights into my question are greatly appreciated.


First off, you ask a lot of good questions :)  With regards to your 
XSP-specific questions, you use the ServerPagesGenerator to start the 

Second, XSP is on the way out for "favored" way of constructing apps in 
Cocoon.  The docs do not reflect this, but the  preferred method is the 
use of Flowscript + CForms.  There's a bunch of docs on the Wiki, and 
are also included with the distribution.  The "Supersonic Tour" block 
has a great intro to building apps with Cocoon, and I also have written 
a Flowscript tutorial at, but as usual some 
of the stuff might not be 100% up to date.

Third, use of the JXTemplateGenerator, which is an integral part of 
using Cocoon with Flowscript and CForms, can help abstract the use of 
templating tags within your pages.

Fourth, there's been a push on the -dev list regarding some of these 
subjects, like JXTG refacoring, templating languages, and everybody's 
favorite, documentation.  It might help to pay attention on the -dev 
list to see exactly what's going on, and I think that your position 
would help us people who are trying to fix the docs =]


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