[XML-SIG] Python / XML / XSLT vs. Cocoon for website server side

Richard Johannesson rtjohan at syspres.com
Thu Aug 14 14:54:14 EDT 2003

I am laying out a new medium size website that I was hoping I could use
Python / XML on the server side. This is a brand new site, no e-commerce at
first, but will add later. Site will need the blog, wiki, group calendar,
and other basic features. The size of site will initially about 50 pages,
but should grow quickly to few thousand pages. Much of the content will be
produced by users. So, main concern is being able to apply stylesheets to
content to keep a consistent look.

Key decisions:
 - All HTML generation done via XSLT
 - Have logic done in XSLT where possible
 - Use Python for glue
 - Use Postgresql for RDBMS
 - Use FreeBSD for Servers
 - Strict separation of content / presentation / logic
 ? Need to figure out what XML (enabled) database can use from Python

Here are the assumptions I'm making:
 - XML to HTML transformations via XSLT will provide good platform
independence. .Net, J2EE, Python all support XSLT. So, if required to move
to different platform, this should be possible
 - XSLT/XML can generate just about any html page a CSS/template engine can
 - Adding new content using XML/XSLT is less work than using ASP/PHP/JSP

Decided to stay away from J2EE / Jboss (overkill/long ramp-up time/slow

I've been wondering how much extra work I'll have to do in Python if I don't
use something like Cocoon. I guess it's possible to use Cocoon with Python.
Would anyone recommend using Cocoon or some alternative?

Is there much consulting work for XML/Python? Current customers are pretty
much exclusively ASP / ASP.net.

Thanks in advance for any feedback on the assumptions I'm making above, any
comments about Cocoon, or what XML database Python supports.


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