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Xkins
Updated: September 2, 2004Version: 0.9.9
Free: yesOpen source: yes
Source available: yesPublisher: Guillermo Meyer

Xkins is a framework that manages skins for your web application.

Skins are used for a web application to look in a different way without the need to write one page for each skin or using CSS. A skin not only manages colors, fonts and images, but also layout and morphology of the web page.

In early Java-Server-Side days, you used to put HTML hardcoded in a Servlet. Then, JSP came to allow you to put your HTML outside Java code. Nowadays, the same happens with taglibs that have HTML tags hardcoded in Java code. Using Xkins you can put this HTML outside your code with an additional and powerful feature: Skins.

Xkins stands from eXtendable Skins. You can define as many skins as you like, and each skin can extend other skin, so it can use all its parent's components and override what it needs to look in a different way. With this feature, maintaining multiple skins becomes a simpler task.

Xkins framework uses Velocity to process snippets of HTML, but you can use any other template processor (Xkins comes with it's own default processor). Xkins also comes with Forms Tag Libs, that allows you to create forms using Xkins and comes with four Skins. Xkins Forms integrates with Struts framework.

Xkins also fits perfect in JSF world, playing a role as a RenderKit, and can work with other presentation frameworks, such as Struts-Layout.


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