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[xml-dev] Browser-based XML Editor?

<disclaimer emoticon="smile">Newbie question from a list newcomer, but I'll
try to be specific! Feel free to just say "search the archives" (which I
*have* done a little of already), although more of a hint would be

I'm a relational DB programmer and, more recently, a web developer. I have
been investigating XML recently, mainly at this point as a repository for
storing content for smallish web sites. I'm interested in separating the
content from the presentation to (1) aid re-use of content in different
presentations througout the site, and (2) enable non-technical users to
change the data without having to change any actual pages.

I'm looking for a web-enabled XML editor, so that my non-technical users can
modify the data through their browser. I'm envisioning some kind of display
like you get when you read an XML document into MSIE, but also with editing
capabilities, not just read-only. (And also not limited to IE!) I've been
searching the web, but the only XML editors I can find seem to be native
client-side executables, not browser interfaces.

In a larger sense, I may really need a CMS of sorts, but I think that would
be overkill for the sites I have in mind. They are small sites (20-100
pages), often non-profits with little or no budget, and generally hosted by
ISPs, so a large install that relies on a specific technology might not be
an option. (I think I would have to stick with some widely-supported CGI
language such as Perl or Python, maybe PHP.) And I would still want to
centralize the data away from the presentation, which some CMS's do and some
don't. I've been successful in using a Perl XML parser to present a simple
XML file as HTML, which I think I can then include as SSI output into a
page, so mainly what I'm missing is the piece that would allow the users to
edit the XML data themselves.

Has anyone ever heard of a web-enabled XML editor? Do they exist and I just
haven't found them? Or if this isn't generally done, is there a technical
reason why it's difficult, or maybe not a good idea? If I was interested in
writing one, any hints or "gotchas"? (I'm sure there're issues I haven't
even thought of, especially if I want to enforce valid documents through the
DTD, which I do.)

Any advice is much appreciated.

- John Brooking
Portland, Maine

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