FAQ - Silex and the content data stored as XML

Question

How does Silex currently store and edit the content data for a site? Can I use external tools in order to edit content?

Answer

Silex uses XML to store the pages data, here is the XML format specifications.

But this data is the “presentation” in fact. It is generated by the WYSIWYG admin interface, and stores all the positions, colors, properties, etc. of the media. In Silex you can also display “dynamic” data, which comes from an external data source, such as RSS feed, data base / webservice, XML file, … In this case, only the URL of the data source is in the page XML. And a component called a “connector” has to be used, e.g. XMLConnector, RSSConnector, XLSConnector, … And only the configuration of the connector ends in the page XML.

So what we call “dynamic” in Silex is the data coming from external source and “static” is the data contained in Silex page XML. The dynamic data is imported at runtime, it is stored by a connector in a dataProvider, i.e. an array. And it can be manipulated through a list component, such as a RichTextList, a CoverFlow, a ComboBox, a SimpleMenu, … or any custom component implementing the iListBase interface. After the user has selected an item in the list, the data is available in the form of accessors. Accessors is a concept made for designers, so that they use variables and actions without coding skills. For example we can use something like «title» to access the title node of the selected item. Or we have a DataContainer component if there are several connectors and possible selections. Then the data is accessed with «myDataContainer.title».

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