What's new in HALE 2.6

These are the descriptions of some of the more interesting or significant changes made to HALE for the 2.6.0 release since the last stable release 2.5.0.


FME integration support HALE now includes a command line interface for interaction with FME (Feature Manipulation Engine), FME will include support for HALE starting with FME 2014.
Create XSLT from an Alignment New in this release is the ability to export XML to XML mappings to XSLT 2.0 scripts. The exported scripts can be used to transform data independently of HALE. The XSLT export supports a different set of functions than the built-in HALE CST transformation. When targeting XSLT for the transformation, use the corresponding compatibility mode. Change to the compatibility mode any time to see if your mapping is compatible with the XSLT export.

User Interface

Occurring values for a property To effectively create a schema mapping, you need understand how the source schema is actually populated. Analyse the loaded source data using the new Occurring values section in the Properties view. It will appear for any selected schema property (even with a context defined) that holds simple coded values like strings, dates or numbers. Retrieving the occurring values has to be triggered manually, but you will get a list of all values together with the respective count of occurrence.

Schema by hierarchy Displaying a schema using its type inheritance hierarchy was possible in earlier HALE versions and is now enabled again, but in a refined manner. This is especially handy for defining relations on super types. Furthermore, there is a new option to hide all properties that are introduced by inheritance. Thus you can easily analyze the schema and its type hierarchy.

For more information, see the Schema Explorer documentation.

Show mapping for schema elements It can be tedious in a large mapping to look for a specific relation you want to inspect or edit. Now you can use the Mapping view to show mappings related to specific schema elements - just select the element in the Schema Explorer and open the mapping view. Mappings on sub-properties of the element will be shown as well, if you enable it in the mapping view.

Comment on mappings Annotate mapping cells with your comments, using the new Notes section in the Properties view. These notes will for instance also be included in a mapping table exported to an Excel spreadsheet.

Changes to Alignment view Working with the Alignment view has been improved by focusing on a set of displayed mapping cells based on your selection in the Schema Explorer. By default (no selection) the type relations will be displayed, but you can also focus on relations applicable in context of specific type relations or certain source or target types.

For more information, see the Alignment view documentation.

Transformation and documentation

Relation priority If you create multiple relations with the same target, those relations will concur. Now you can assign specific priorities to relations - if the relation with the highest priority does not apply or does not yield a result, the relation with the next-highest priority will be evaluated, and so on.

For more information, see Cell priority.

Inherited property relations The type hierarchy in source and target schema can be exploited to create mappings faster and with minimal redundancy. Relations you create between properties of specific types apply as well for their sub-types - and even for conditions applied to the type. The image below shows an example type hierarchy displayed in the Schema Explorer.

In the example, relations defined on properties of River will also be applied for the two type condition contexts of River , relations on properties of _Feature will be applied to the corresponding properties of River and the two contexts as well. In the Alignment view, inherited relations are marked with an upward arrow ().

Mapping modules Created mappings can now be reused in other projects. An existing HALE alignment file can be imported as base alignment into the current project. The mappings defined in the base alignment will appear as part of the project's alignment in addition to the mappings defined therein. Base alignment mappings cannot be edited or deleted, but you can disable them if needed.

Alignment as mapping table Export your alignment as a mapping table. Supported formats are Excel spreadsheets (.xls and .xslx) and CSV files with multi-line values (e.g. as supported in LibreOffice).