The XML Enabler is a servlet that can successfully implement stylesheets such as the LotusXSLtechnology. Using the XML Enabler, developers with any kind of browser can now send requests to a servlet and as the servlet responds, it formats the data using different XSL stylesheets. The system administrator can then configure which stylesheets go with which browser types.
Therefore, the XML Enabler makes XML real by allowing any user of any browser to view and use XML data. Most developers in the XML space are concerned with the heavy client. In other words, "you can use XML as soon as you move to Internet Explorer 4.0 or higher." The XML Enabler technology removes this impediment and allows the system administrator to focus on using XML-tagged data intelligently without worrying about the types of browsers that might be used to view that data.
It uses the XML and XSL technology mentioned above, combined with the information in the HTTP header. The system administrator defines the mapping between browser types and XSL stylesheets. Once that mapping is defined, the servlet gets XML data from a data source, then formats that data using an XSL stylesheet. The XML Enabler works with the Lotus Extensible Stylesheet Language (XSL) Processor to transform data using XSL stylesheets. When an HTTP request comes in to the XML Enabler, it does three things:
- Gets the XML document requested by the client (the URL of that document is passed as a parameter on the URL).
- Looks at the client type (using the user-agent field of the HTTP header), and selects an XSL stylesheet. The stylesheet selected for each user-agent type is defined by the webmaster or webmistress.
- Once the XML document and the XSL stylesheet are selected, the two are combined by the Lotus XSL Processor; the output from the XSL Processor is returned to the client.