Monday, June 04, 2007

XML Tools screen-casts

Before leaving Microsoft, the last thing I worked on was the XML Editor in Visual Studio. In Visual Studio 2005, Microsoft shipped one of the best XML Editors out there. Intellisense, XSD syntax support, XSLT syntax support, XSLT Debugging, XSD Schema auto-generation. There is an incredible amount of functionality hidden in there.

One of my favorite 'hidden' features is goto-definition. Position the cursor on an element in a document with an associated schema, and F12 will jump you to the part of the schema that governs that element. I occasionally get some very complex customer schemas. F12 can also be used to navigate with-in a schema, from an element declaration to the declaration of it's type, or to the base type declaration. When the schema spans megabytes and multiple files, this is invaluable.

The XML Team just released some screen-casts of existing and future functionality. If you use Visual Studio and ever have to edit XML files. Watch Stan and you will almost certainly learn some new tricks.


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