Center unveils online XML toolkit

A New York applied research center today released its first version of an online toolkit designed to help government agencies use Extensible Markup Language for managing Web sites.

The product, called the XML Toolkit, can be found at www.thexmltoolkit.org. Researchers at the Center for Technology in Government (CTG) at the State University of New York at Albany have been formally investigating and assessing the use of XML to replace HTML. HTML is the predominant language used to define and structure the layout of a Web document.

The center formed a partnership with the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations and the Office of the Chief Information Officer for a test project. In January, it presented results of the project in which five participating state government agencies established business case analyses and prototype Web sites using XML. The results led to the development of the online toolkit.

Using XML can improve workflow and decrease the time, effort and costs related to Web site management, according to CTG officials. The center converted its Web site to an XML format several years ago and dramatically reduced the effort necessary to manage the site, officials said. The site expanded from 1,300 pages to 5,000 pages in five years.

The toolkit offers a library of resources needed to manage a Web site with XML. It provides tips on how to create Web pages using XML, different approaches to setting up XML on a Web server and examples of codes for specific functions and results.

It also provides useful tools for XML development, publications related to the task and other hints. A feedback section enables visitors to comment on the library and provide their own resources, code samples and tips.

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