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Req: Info on XML Document Management Systems

P: n/a
I am looking for an XML document management systems that might meet my
requirements. The group I work for produces a great deal of reports
and documents. These documents can be quite long (~300+ pages).
Currently, MS Word is used to produce these. I believe there would be
significant advantages to switching to XML as an underlying document
format, the primary advantage being separating document content from
the presentation and delivery mechanisms.

The issue is that I can't seem to find any products that may be suited
to the task - the vast majority of XML editors are geared towards
programmers (like me), or users who would have a detailed
understanding of XML, rather than abstracting the idea of XML and
simplifying the job of writing a report, without having to worry about
styles and formatting and other issues besides the content being
produced. And since I am a lone developer, trying to build something
like this is not a viable option (but integrating pieces of other
solutions definitely would be).

Here is the wishlist of features I'd like to see in a

* Provide a server-based XML document repository, where documents and
reports would be organized, indexed, searchable, version controlled.
Ideally this would be a cross-platform product.

* A "report" or "document" in the repository must be able to consist
of a number of files, and include other files like images or videos.

* Accept customized XML DTDs and stylesheets for content structure and
presentation. It should be able to produce transformed documents
on-the-fly. Ideally, these documents could be requested through a web
service request to integrate with existing portals and products. While
Docbook provides an excellent structure, it may be too complicated for
my users (especially to start), and I need the option of using other

* Provide a very easy-to-use editor (preferably web-based, maybe a
Java Applet) This should be extremely intuitive for non-XML experts to
use, and allow the content to be edited in a way that matches the
content structure. XMLMind is the best editor I've found so far (the
Conglomerate screenshots look good too, but I need a Windows
solution), but I believe there should be an even simpler one out
there, with more polish.

* Be reasonably priced.

Other "nice-to-haves":
* Be friendly with MS Word and email documents
* Integrate with Active Directory, allowing customized/filtered
viewing of the repository based on access controls.
* Integrate with a workflow management tool
* Provide a way for certain users to digitally sign reports (via
Entrust PKI)
* Be open-source

Could anyone please offer any input? I was quite surprised when I
started my search for a product like this and haven't found anything
suitable yet. I welcome feedback from sales types as well, assuming
the product fits the requirements I have laid out.

Tim Sawlor
Jul 20 '05 #1
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