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From Sylvain Wallez <>
Subject Re: [STATUS] Cocoon Roadmap
Date Sun, 03 Mar 2002 21:22:06 GMT
Stefano Mazzocchi wrote:

>I know some of you are discouradged by the lack of overall 'polishness'
>of the latest and greatest version of Cocoon.
>I think I can speak for the entire development community if I greatly
>apologize for that. And I think you deserve it.
>Yes, we are all volunteers, but one way or another, we are earning
>something from this (if ever, visibility, respect and, last but not
>least, fun and knowledge) and we must continue the level of the past
>quality of our work in order to keep things going and to keep things
>In this regard, I want to tell you a few things that are going on:
>1) DOCUMENTATION: the documentation has been cleaned up a little, the
>stylesheets of the web site polished to look much more readable and
>light. Some documents were removed because we plan to incorporate more
>stuff into that.
>In this regard, please, help us making this better!
>The reason why documentation is normally not that good is that we
>generally don't need it since we can look into the code (which is the
>best documentation, if you know where to look) or simply email the guy
>who wrote it.
>But this doesn't scale: documentation is the only way to make knowledge
>scale well.
>So, if you have *any* kind of notes, mockups, emails-to-your-boss,
>courses you made to your colleagues, about cocoon and friends, please,
>let us know! It doesn't matter if they are not formatted properly, if
>they are not using our Documentation DTD or anything, don't worry, go to
>bugzilla ( and throw it into the PATCH queue,
>somebody will pick it up, refactor it, place in into the docs and, most
>important, *give you credits for it*!
>It's *that* easy, believe me.
To make things easier for those who want to write with our document DTD, 
I've written a CSS2 stylesheet for it. I tested it with the XMLmind XML 
editor (aka XXE, see : it's a cool 
open-source CSS2 enabled XML editor written in Java, which provides 
word-processor like document editing.

Since the CSS renders like the web site, writing a doc in the document 
DTD is like writing a web page ! Check it out in 
src/documentation/xdocs/css, and be indulgent since it's my first CSS2 
stylesheet :)


>Doesn't matter if you think you don't know enough: it's *exactly*
>because you don't feel like a guru (yet!) that your opinions, views,
>input is important to all the other people that haven't finished
>climbing the 'unfortunately steep' Cocoon learning curve :/
>2) SPEED: we are currently *very* close in having Xalan XSLTC working
>for Cocoon. XSLTC is a new XSLT processor that was donated to Apache by
>Sun Microsytems and, just like XSP, transforms a stylesheet into
>Tests on my machine show 600% speed improvement over Xalan-J!!! And 200%
>speed improvement over MSXML (the native library that powers Internet
That's sooo great : no, Java isn't slow !

>along with an incredibly lower memory footprint (thus, reduced garbage
>collection, and overall improved performance and scalability)
>There are a few compliance bugs to sort out, but we are confident that
>we'll be able to ship Cocoon with XSLTC in the near future (if not in
>2.0.2, for sure in 2.0.3)
>At the same time, we are looking into faster and more scalable ways to
>store the cached files.
>With these two things together, Cocoon might be able to increase
>performance in the next couple of releases between 200% and 600%
>(depending on your use of XSLT and cache, of course). We are very
>excited about this.
>Another issue what we are working on is the sitemap interpretation vs.
>compilation: we currently have two engines for the sitemap, the one
>based on XSLT-generated code  and then compiled (the one you are using
>right now) and a new interpreted-based one. 
>We believe that with Hotspot server JVMs, the interpreted version might
>be faster, but we don't have numbers to show that today. For sure,
>sitemap reload time is almost instant now, compared to the compiled
>solution. And this is very nice for development cycles.
Quick tests showed that request processing can be up to 10% faster than 
with the compiled engine (see ).

>I expect the interpreted sitemap engine to be shipped very soon,
>probably already in 2.0.2.
So, if nobody objects, I'll move it to the main trunk for 2.0.2.

>3) SYMMETRY: the cocoon devs have always been aware of the intrinsic
>cocoon asymmetry between content flowing out and content flowing in.
>There are number of things that we are working on in this regard:
> 3.1) Writeable Sources: we are working on making the protocol handlers
>symmetrical, meaning that you can read from any resource (say
>dbxml://database/docs/news) and also *write* on it. (this should remove
>the need to create custom write-somewhere transformers for each type of
>resource being used to write on)
This is a reality with the latest CVS for files (using the 'file:' 
protocol). Writing can also be transactional : see FileSource 
implementation that uses a temp file until closed sucessfully. The next 
two sources that should be made writeable are xmldb and raw URLs 
(allowing http or ftp upload)

<snip what="many interesting stuff"/>

>Thanks for reaching this far.
I did ;)

>Keep it up!

Sylvain Wallez
 Anyware Technologies                  Apache Cocoon 

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