Simple XML-to-Python conversion

gaudetteje at gaudetteje at
Sat Mar 19 05:24:56 CET 2005

I've tried xmltramp and element tree, but these tools aren't what I had
in mind.  I've come to the realization that it's not the tools that are
lacking.  In fact, I'm a big fan of ElementTree now, but would only use
it for large parsing tasks.  Instead, I think the problem is either
inherent in the XML standard, or I'm missing something conceptually.

Let me elaborate.  Most of these tools I've experimented with parse a
document rather easily into a structure that I can traverse one element
at a time.  Each level of a node/tree has 4 basic pieces:
1) the tag,
2) one or more attributes,
3) encapsulated data, and
4) children nodes/trees

>From what I understand, this is how XML was standardized, in a sort of
hierarchical structure of infinite possibilities.  The problem I'm
having with these structures is that I need to actively search through
each level for the item I want.  All I really want to do is access one
or more elements at the same time and know where they are without

What I'm looking to use are basic structures such as:
to name a few.  Since these are essentially unique constants that will
only be used once or twice, I want to be able to place them in a
function argument, or concatenate several of them, such as root.path
and root.input.filename to create a new string.  I'm finding it rather
impossible to do such things unless I basically create my own structure
from the tree structure that I get when I parse the XML document.

If I used a simple INI file or CSV file, I would simply have to parse
my file once and match the name with the value.  Why is it necessary to
parse a document once and then re-parse your information into a format
that you can use.  This seems absurd to me.  Any thoughts on this?  Do
I even have the correct understanding of how this is done?

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