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The scala.xml library has some very annoying issues. Time for a clean-room replacement!

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Anti-XML: The Non-Violent Solution

Documentation and usage can be found at

Anti-XML is a proposed replacement for the scala.xml package in the Scala standard library. The standard package is outdated and beyond fixing. We need to start over, on solid foundations and unburdened by backward compatibility. Anti-XML aims for quality in three major areas:

  • Usability
    • Leverage powerful ideas like combinators and proper ADTs
    • Leverage the 2.8 collections library
    • Provide consistent selector behavior
    • Avoid these missteps: Node <: NodeSeq <: Seq[Node], MetaData, Atom[String]
  • Reliability
    • Use immutable data structures (in the API and under the hood too)
    • Avoid bugs and race conditions
    • Provide a proper equals
  • Performance
    • Lower memory usage (Novell Vibe once had a 16 MB chunk of XML use 250 MB of heap!)
    • Provide efficient selectors

We are exploring many ideas for this project. It will be interesting to see where things go!


The Maven artifact descriptor for the latest stable version of Anti-XML is as follows: com.codecommit:anti-xml_2.8.1:0.2. We also regularly push -SNAPSHOT releases to the Scala-Tools_ "snapshots" repository, for all five of you who like to live dangerously. You should be able to use this descriptor to easily add Anti-XML as a dependency to any project with a Maven-compatible build system (Maven, Buildr, SBT, Gradle, Ivy, etc). The stable artifacts themselves are hosted in the Scala-Tools_ "releases" repository. For reference, here are a few copy/paste snippets you can use for some of the common build systems.


val antiXML = "com.codecommit" %% "anti-xml" % "0.2"


compile.with "com.codecommit:anti-xml_#{Scala.version}:jar:0.2"



Supported Versions of Scala

Anti-XML is cross-built for the following Scala versions:

  • 2.9.0-1 (0.3-SNAPSHOT release only)
  • 2.9.0
  • 2.8.1

While it is theoretically possible to add support for 2.8.0, we have no plans to do so at this time. The reason being that Specs2 – the testing framework used by Anti-XML – has not been cross-built for 2.8.0. Additionally, ScalaCheck has not updated its 2.8.0 cross-build in several months. All that combined with the fact that 2.8.1 is a nearly-completely backwards compatible update with 2.8.0 has led to the conclusion that cross-building for 2.8.0 just isn't worth the effort.


Usage information, examples, performance results and more can be found on the Anti-XML website:


Contributions are most welcome! Fork, hack, request pull, rinse and repeat. If you're looking for things to work on, I would check the issue tracker or the official TODO list. However, before you get started, be sure to read the information in CONTRIBUTING.rst. It offers some basic code guidelines (don't worry, curly braces aren't a religious issue here) and explains the legal mumbo-jumbo involved in contributing.

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