Dear All,

I've summarized this sub-thread at

(and I admit to some modifications of the original listing, notably 
mentioning syntax highlighting, which seems on the one hand absolutely 
helpful for new (and old) users of XML, and on the other is relatively 
cheap to implement)

Best regards,


On 08/07/16 00:45, Piotr Bański wrote:
> Hey, we're getting somewhere... When thinking of features IN, I also
> thought that some of us, when they hear "XSLT?", reply with "XQuery!",
> but Saxon HE could handle both, so no problem there.
> Best,
>    P.
> On 07/07/16 23:51, Martin Holmes wrote:
>> I think it would be helpful also to agree on a list of things that
>> _wouldn't_ be needed for a teaching edition.
>> One simple line that could be drawn across the feature set would be that
>> none of the commercial tools (Saxon PE, Saxon EE) would be available;
>> that means no XSLT 3, for instance.
>> I don't think you'd need the XSLT or XQuery debuggers; nor would you
>> need the database connectivity.
>> The SVN client, the Tree Editor, and the Compare Files/Directories tools
>> could also be removed.
>> Similarly, syntax highlighting and editing support for some file types
>> which are not XML-based could be removed (JavaScript, CSS, JSON, etc.).
>> In this way you'd arrive at something which would be utterly useless for
>> the likes of me, and quite frustrating for serious users, but perfectly
>> functional for teaching introductory XML encoding classes over a few
>> months.
>> Cheers,
>> Martin
>> On 2016-07-07 02:28 PM, Pierazzo, Elena wrote:
>>> Hi Piotr,
>>>> While we all know that these brilliant guys have to earn their bread
>>>> somehow, and so can't just spread freebies around, I wonder how
>>>> realistic it would be to put together a list of features for a
>>>> dumbed-down teaching version of oXygen. I am somewhat afraid that
>>>> it's not too realistic, because course profiles naturally vary
>>>> depending on the exact content and the level of the audience, and
>>>> maintaining a new version might incur new costs.
>>> I was thinking along the same lines, actually… and having your same
>>> reluctancies (great minds…).
>>>> Still, I spent a while writing and rewriting the previous sentence,
>>>> and cutting some parts of it, exactly because I can imagine
>>>> counterarguments to what I say above. Maybe it would be worth our
>>>> while to *try* to put together a list of features that we'd like to
>>>> have in such an editor, just to see if we could agree on a single set
>>>> of such features -- because if not, then we already could see why
>>>> there's no point in asking George and Co. for that.
>>> I have actually already discussed things a bit with George. I have
>>> been teaching XML and TEI for about 15 years now (yes, I’m that old)
>>> and when you teach to absolute beginners what is an element and why
>>> the TEI is such a good idea, it is hard to ask them to commit to buy
>>> an editor because they do not yet know if they going to like working
>>> with the TEI or not. Furthermore, a 30 days trials is not enough:
>>> before putting int $100, people would like to make sure that that will
>>> constitute a good return. In my discussion with George, he seemed
>>> partial to the idea that if someone is organising a TEI-flavoured
>>> training and is a TEI member, they could be able to offer a 2/3 months
>>> trial, which is incredibly generous of theirs, and I think it could
>>> solve some of our issues, but not all, not mine anyway.
>>> My problem, and Roberto's I think, is that we are talking about
>>> courses within a university degree that on the one hand tend to last
>>> longer than 30 days (or 60 days) and on the other, in case of newly
>>> established realities or tight budgets, they require us to convince
>>> our administrators that to pay $1k for a class or a site licence is a
>>> good investment, which in many cases is not the easiest thing to do.
>>>> And if we _could_ agree on a single feature set, then the ball would
>>>> move into the hands of Syncro Soft profilers, and they would simply
>>>> have to check if they see reasonable benefit there. After all, the
>>>> benefit would come not only from selling the teaching licenses but
>>>> also from the fact that students would use oXygen during their
>>>> training, and that is something that some might choose not to ignore
>>>> in their long-range calculations. Lots of question marks there, but
>>>> an agreed feature set comes first, as a precondition to further
>>>> speculations or calculations. And Elena has just given us a seed for
>>>> such a feature set.
>>> In my experience of teaching, the features I absolutely need are:
>>> - multiplatform
>>> - validation with Relax NG
>>> - contextual suggestions
>>> - XSLT 2 transformation
>>> - easy to use
>>> - free
>>> Desirable are:
>>> - xPath query
>>> - Inline documentation (i.e. the little pop-ups with the definition of
>>> the element)
>>> - pre-set templates
>>> All other features are, in my opinion, for people that ha decided that
>>> the TEI is a good thing and wants that for their work. In these case,
>>> I think expecting them to buy the software is reasonable. I like to
>>> remember how oXygen was the first software I ever bought with my own
>>> money.
>>> Elena

Piotr Bański, Ph.D.
Senior Researcher,
Institut für Deutsche Sprache,
R5 6-13
68-161 Mannheim, Germany