X-Smiles is happy news for XML browsing
10:15, 29 Mar 2001 UTC | Edd Dumbill

Mikko Honkala writes with news of X-Smiles, an open source Java-based XML browser, intended for use in embedded devices as well as the desktop.

Despite the small nature of the destination devices, X-Smiles offers wide support for XML technologies, including:

  • Extended Markup Language
  • XSL Transformations
  • XSL Formatting Objects
  • Synchronised Multimedia Integration Language 1.0 (SMIL)
  • XML Forms (XForms)
  • Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG)

Some of the support offered is via use of third party libraries, e.g. for XSL-FO, while X-Smiles integrates its own support for technologies such as SMIL and XForms.

Also available is ECMAScript scripting and various graphical user interfaces. As well as the main goal of XML browsing, X-Smiles has subsidiary objectives, described on their web page, of support for mixing different XML languages in a single document, multimedia content and streaming, and interactive services through forms.

X-Smiles is produced by the Telecommunications Software and Multimedia Laboratory at Helsinki University of Tehcnology. For more information and download, visit The current version is 0.3.

X-Smiles has huge potential - for XSL-FO, SVG, XForms etc (Andrew Watt - 13:52, 29 Mar 2001)

X-Smiles gives an exciting glimpse of what the future may hold when multiple namespace XML browsers become widely available.

X-Smiles is at an early stage of development (version 0.31) but it already demonstrates the huge potential of combining, for example, XSL-FO with SVG and/or SMIL. If you imagined that XSL-FO was a dull, corporate document format then take a look at the XSL-FO demo with an embedded SMIL document with multimedia.

Ponder the kind of changes that might produce in your company's annual report. :)

With the arrival of X-Smiles and similar tools and the addition of XLink functionality the XML-based Web can come alive in a way which we haven't seen in the last 3 years.

I think there are exciting times ahead! :)

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