Why do we need custom XML filetypes?

20_smallerMy son asked me how my day had gone and before I could answer he said in a slightly mocking tone “blah blah blah… XML… blah… XML … blah blah”.  Clearly I spend too much time outside of work talking about work, and clearly his perception of what I do is tainted towards the more technical aspects I like the most!  Aside from the note to self “stop talking about this stuff after I leave the office!” it got me thinking about why I probably think about XML as much as I apparently do and how I could help others avoid the very same compulsion!  I’ve written articles in the past about how to use regular expressions in Studio, and an article on using XPath, and I’ve probably touched on handling XML files from time to time in various articles.  But I don’t think I’ve ever explained how to create an XML filetype in the first place, or why you would want to… after all Studio has default filetypes for XML and this is just another filetype that the CAT tool should be able to handle… right?

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XML Length Restrictions

01This week I spent some time in Stockholm attending one of the SDL Roadshows.  As usual it was a great event, and we have more to come.  In fact this year I get to attend a fair few so if you’re attending Copenhagen, Milan or Paris in May then I’ll look forward to seeing you there!

But I’m not writing about the roadshows.  I also enjoyed a day before the roadshow with some of our very technical customers in a small workshop and as usual they had lots of interesting questions to tax our software and my brain!  But this time I had reinforcements in the shape of Iulia who is a QA Engineer from our Cluj office.  The team in Cluj never cease to amaze me with their dedication to making the products better and in supporting our customers, in addition to their knowledge of our products.  But the reason I want to mention Iulia in particular is because these technical sessions always involve questions around how we handle XML in Studio.  This time was no exception and one question in particular had me dreaming up all kinds of workarounds… they were interesting I think, but unnecessary because Studio has some clever features here I’d never looked at before, but Iulia had.  Of course I don’t know why I’d expect anything less from a team that QA our products, but I thought it would be good to share.

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