The XHTML WYSIWYG Editor For Desktop & Web Applications


XStandard: Powerful features. Steered by standards.

This table lists the principal features of XStandard Lite and XStandard Pro, with explanatory screen shots. Hyperlinks lead to additional information. Please contact us if you have any questions.

XStandard Features
FeatureLiteProSee ItNotes
Runs in browser-based content management solutions Yes YesBrowser screen shotInternet Explorer, Firefox, Safari and Opera.
Runs in desktop-based content management solutions Yes YesWindows screen shotUse XStandard wherever ActiveX controls are supported (Visual Basic, Visual C++, Access, Visual Studio.NET, Delphi, FoxPro, etc.). See App Integration in this documentation for more details.
Author/edit/spell check alternate text directly in the document Yes Yes The "Images As Text" feature reduces the skill required to author appropriate alternate text, intuitively clarifies the function of alternate text, and exposes alternate text for the first time to processing by popular editing features such as find/replace and spell checking.
Generates clean XHTML Yes YesXHTML screen shotWhy XHTML is best for content management systems (CMS).
Supports most CSS 2.1 selectors Yes Yes Supported CSS 2.1 selectors
A genuine XHTML editor, not an HTML editor with code clean-up routines. Yes YesMarkup comparison screen shotMost WYSIWYG editors are just JavaScript wrappers around the editing control built into many browsers such as the MSHTML control found in Internet Explorer. These types of editor (which generate HTML and then run code clean-up routines against it) have significant limitations. By contrast, XStandard is built from the ground up to be a true XHTML editor in its own right.
XHTML generated by XStandard can be parsed by XML parsers. Yes Yes Use off-the-self XML technologies like DOM, SAX and XSLT to further process markp generated by XStandard. Your CMS can do this before content is saved to the database, or in a batch process. See an example of how to load content generated by XStandard into an XML DOM parser.
Uses Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) for formatting. Yes YesExternal CSS screen shotXStandard uses external or embedded CSS to ensure data is never fused with formatting. See how to correctly format content.
Makes applying CSS quick and easy Yes YesStyles menu screen shotApplying the correct formatting is fast and accurate using XStandard's drop-down "Styles" menu that generates the markup that references CSS. User-friendly style names speed the authoring process.
Uses Web Services not FTP for file uploading No YesFile upload screen shotWeb Services are superior to FTP because they handle metadata and offer tighter integration with content management systems.
Easy-to-use interface Yes YesInterface screen shotXStandard's streamlined toolbar is a refreshing alternative to the dizzy array of toolbar buttons/controls seen in most WYSIWYG editors. XStandard is able to offer more functionality with a tighter toolbar because advanced functionality is available through the context menu and the Styles drop-down menu. Also, since content in XStandard is formatted through CSS, some toolbar buttons/controls used by other editors are completely unecessary.
Configurable toolbar Yes YesToolbar screen shotShow / hide / move the buttons on XStandard's toolbar.
Customizable toolbar No YesCustomize toolbar screen shotChange icons to match the look-and-feel of your own applications. Move frequently used styles to the toolbar. Program buttons to insert code snippets, or use your own buttons to extend XStandard's functionality.
Available in 22 languages Yes YesLanguage versions screen shotLanguage versions include: English, French, German, Spanish, Chinese, Dutch, Italian, Russian and Czech.
Create new language versions easily. Yes YesCreate localizations screen shotSince XStandard stores its localization data in an independent XML file, XStandard's 22 standard interface languages can be easily modified (reworded), or entirely new language versions of XStandard can be created.
Manages content in any language Yes YesMultilingual authoring screen shotAuthor content in multiple languages (including Chinese, Russian, Greek, etc.). XStandard is a true Unicode editor.
Imports third-party data No YesDirectory screen shotXStandard's timesaving "Directory" feature communicates with third-party applications (such as your CMS) and allows users to insert data from external sources directly into the editor.
Cleans Microsoft Word No YesMicrosoft Word markup screen shotXStandard retains structural elements when pasting from Word (lists, tables, hyperlinks, images, headings, etc.), but strips out proprietary Microsoft Office tags and inline formatting.
Has a multi-lingual spell checker and custom dictionary No YesSpell checking screen shotSpell check in English (US, Canadian, British), German, Danish, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Norwegian, Portuguese and Swedish. Add unusual spellings or frequently used abbreviations to a custom dictionary.
Enables locking of content (read-only) No YesContent locking screen shot 
Ability to add markers to content No YesMarkers screen shotMarkers are text labels that can apply short, informative messages to elements of content. For example, they can be used to flag areas of editable or read-only content.
Supports subdocuments No YesSubdocuments screen shotSubdocuments are chunks of reusable content that authors insert into documents as required. Subdocuments are essentially custom elements that act as placeholders for content stored outside the document, within the CMS.
Supports popular table editing options. Yes YesTable editing screen shotEditing options include splitting / merging cells, aligning cell contents (right / left / center / top / middle / bottom), inserting / deleting rows, columns and tables, etc.
Ability to draw tables by dragging Yes YesDraw tables screen shot 
Supports bullets and numbered lists Yes YesBullets and numbering screen shot 
Supports authoring definition lists Yes YesDefinition list screen shotXStandard is one of the few editors that support authoring of definition lists. XStandard also has unique features that make authoring defintion lists easier, including the ability to sort items in the list.
Supports the correct use of block quotes Yes YesBlock quote screen shotMost editors use <blockquote> for indenting which is wrong. XStandard encourages the correct use of <blockquote> for quotations only, and uses CSS for indenting.
Supports inline quotes Yes Yes XStandard is one of the few editors that support the <q> element.
Easily creates links within the current document Yes YesCreate links within current document screen shotXStandard automatically treats document sections (headings h1 to h6) as anchor points and provides an interface to create hyperlinks to these anchors.
Use relative URLs for images Yes YesUse relative URLs screen shotXStandard can be configured to resolve relative URLs in markup so that images with relative URLs can be displayed to users.
Cursor stays in sync when switching between Edit and View Source modes Yes Yes  
Saves images from the editor to the desktop Yes YesSave images to desktop screen shot 
Supports drag & drop of image files directly into the editor, as well as file browsing No Yes Drag images from the desktop into the editor. Images will be uploaded to the server. Browse image files on the local computer or in remote libraries. Set limits on file size and type.
Permits entire folders to be dragged directly into the editor No YesDrag in folder screen shotUploaded folders are automatically zipped and a hyperlink created to the zipped file.
Inserts custom tags Yes YesCustoms tags screen shotXStandard makes it easy for business users to add semantic meaning to text and objects by inserting custom tags.
Automatically inserts image metadata No YesImage metadata screen shotMetadata attached to image files in libraries browsed by XStandard is automatically captured when images are selected.
Supports semantic markup tags like <abbr>, <acronym>, <dfn>, <kbd>, <samp>, <code>, <cite>, etc. Yes YesSemantic markup screen shotInserts semantic tags that render markup meaningful to visual and non-visual browsers.
Meets or exceeds regional accessibility standards for code output Yes YesStandards compliant screen shotThe editor's standards-compliant markup meets or exceeds accessibility requirements: Section 508 (USA), CLF (Canada), etc.
Distinguishes between data and layout tables Yes YesLayout and data table screen shotMaintains the important distinction between data and layout tables, which are processed differently by assistive technologies such as screen readers.
Distinguishes between decorative and informative images Yes YesImage type screen shotXStandard makes it easy to ensure that informative images are used in a semantically meaningful way.
Offers a rich API for extending the editor's functionality No YesAPI screen shotExtend the functionality of XStandard through custom programming to meet the unique needs of your content management system. Hook into XStandard events to launch your own dialog boxes and to programmatically insert markup into the editor.
Includes a unique "Screen Reader Preview" Yes YesScreenreader Preview screen shotThe accessibility button on XStandard's toolbar opens the Screen Reader Preview that helps authors further optimize content for accessibility.
Collapsible/expandable editor window via toolbar button Yes YesExpand/collapse editor screen shotCollapsing the editor permits a more economic use of screen real estate, while permitting authors to expand the editor when in use. The editor can be expanded to a full-screen view, or customized to snap open to any size.


Aditional Information:Supports most CSS 2.1 selectorsBack to table

Universal selector
Matches the name of any element. For example:
* {margin:0;padding:0}
Type selector
Matches the name of a given element. For example:
h1 {color:red}
Descendant selector
Matches an element that is the descendant of another element. For example:
h1 em {color:red}
Child selector
Matches an element that is the direct child of another element. For example:
p > q > strong {color:red}
Adjacent sibling selector
Matches an element, given an element that immediately precedes it. For example:
h1 + p {margin-left:40px}
Attribute selector
Matches elements that have certain attributes. For example:
a[title] {color:red}
Class selector
Matches elements given a class value. For example:
em.important {color:red}
ID selector
Matches an element with a given ID. For example:
#chapter1 {color:red}

Aditional Information:XStandard makes applying the correct CSS quick and easyBack to table
Authors apply CSS by choosing formatting options from the editor's drop-down Styles menu. Each style in the menu generates markup that references an appropriate CSS. Since developers can attribute friendly, meaningful names to each style (for examle, "Chapter Heading" or "Sale Price"), authors find it easy to recognize and apply the right formatting to the right content. Styles in the menu can also be grouped together for greater convenience, and the choice of styles will typically reflect the type of document being edited. For authors, these features make applying CSS an intuitive and comfortable experience that results in high levels of compliance with presentation standards.

Aditional Information:The advantages of using Web ServicesBack to table

  1. Web Services can be easily customized to meet the unique needs of different content management systems, whereas FTP lacks the programmatic hooks necessary for processes that require tighter integration. For example, requiring uploaded files to be stored directory in a database, pushed through a workflow process, or modified in some way before being saved to the server.
  2. Today's applications also require more metadata than FTP is able to provide. For example, when uploading a file, Web Services can also supply the CMS with information such as the name of the document the file is associated with, the Session ID, which user uploaded the file, etc.
  3. Some corporate networks also do not permit FTP, so Web Services that run over HTTP are an ideal solution.

Aditional Information:A configurable and customizable toolbarBack to table
Both versions of XStandard permit toolbar icons to be hidden, displayed or moved to different positions on the editor's toolbar. XStandard Pro also has a customizable toolbar that allows developers to change the appearance of toolbar icons to match the look-and-feel of applications XStandard runs in, or to move frequently used styles off the drop-down Styles menu and onto the toolbar. Buttons can also be programmed to insert code snippets into the editor, or to extend the editor's functionality in other ways.

Aditional Information:Imports third-party dataBack to table
XStandard's "Directory" service is a timesaving feature that communicates with third-party applications, such as CMS. It allows users to import external data from those applications directly into the editor. Content imported in this way might include staff listings, product numbers and descriptions, or indeed any type of centrally stored information in any structure (tables, email addresses, etc.)

Aditional Information:Supports drag & drop of images directly into the editor, and file browsingBack to table
Images can be dragged directly into XStandard from the desktop. Restrictions can be set on file size or type, and the dimensions of uploaded images are automatically calculated. XStandard ensures that images are used correctly by requiring images to be identified as "decorative" or "informative", and requiring alt text for the latter.

Aditional Information:Inserts custom tags that add semantic meaning to text and objectsBack to table
Custom tags allow business users to attach semantic meaning to elements of content during the authoring process. Custom tags can subsequently be used for indexing data, or for optimizing search results in enterprise-level search engines. They can also serve as placeholders for dynamic content. In the example below, a custom tag acts as a placeholder for the latest stock price:

  1. The current stock price is $<stock exchange="NASDAQ">INTL</stock>.

At run time this gives the result:

  1. The current stock price is $31.49.

Aditional Information:Supports the distinction between data and layout tablesBack to table
Data tables such as the one below contain data that can only understood in relation to cell and column headers. If the association between the table cells and the headers is not made clear, non-visual browsers will read the data in linear fashion. The result will be meaningless and sound like this. By contrast, XStandard makes it easy to create tables that use <th> to identify the column and row headers that cell contents refer to. XStandard also requires authors to submit summaries for data tables, allowing non-visual browsers to describe tables fully. Listen to how a screen reader might process the same data table properly marked up using XStandard.

Cups of coffee consumed by each person

Aditional Information:Distinguishes between decorative and informative imagesBack to table
XStandard ensures that images are used correctly by prompting authors to identify images as decorative or informative, when images are uploaded through the editor or referenced in a remote library.

Decorative images are used for visual effect or as design elements (spacers or graphical bullets). Since they are not used to convey meaningful information, XStandard makes decorative images invisible to non-visual browsers by giving them an empty alt text, and by not requiring a title or longdesc.

By contrast, informative images such as photographs, diagrams and navigational aids do convey important meaning. XStandard therefore requires alt text for informative images and encourages users to also contribute both a title and longdesc. In addition, XStandard reinforces the distinction between alt text and title by asking for both. (title is properly used for tool tips, not alt)

Aditional Information:Includes a unique "Screen Reader Preview"Back to table
Markup generated by XStandard is guaranteed to be accessibility-ready, but XStandard's Screen Reader Preview offers authors an additional opportunity to optimize content for accessibility. It does this by displaying content managed through XStandard as it is "read" by screen readers. This means content is laid out in linear fashion, together with information that the author would normally not see (alternate text, table summaries, tool tips, etc.). Previewing content in this fashion prompts authors to make necessary changes prior to publishing.

The Screen Reader Preview also issues alert messages when code entered manually through View Source contains semantically questionable markup. For example it discourages the use of the <b> tag, which has visual significance for sighted readers but carries no semantic significance for users of assistive technologies such as screen readers. In this case users would be encouraged to use <strong> which does have semantic meaning for screen readers. Other alert messages include warnings that alt text or table summaries are missing. This information must be submitted before content can be saved.