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Re: nwalsh and XML vs SGML [Fwd: First Open Source Documentation Summit at the O'Reilly Open Source Convention]

On Jul 19,  2:39pm, Gary Lawrence Murphy wrote:
> Subject: Re: nwalsh and XML vs SGML [Fwd: First Open Source
> >>>>> "D" == Dan York <dyork@linuxcare.com> writes:
>     D> Was he suggesting it just to get out of all the tags in
>     D> DocBook?  It doesn't seem to me that using XML really solves
>     D> any issues. If anything, the rigid case-sensitivity (all tags
>     D> must be lowercase) just seems to add another issue.
> He means DocBook/XML because (see my earlier posting today) the next
> generation of tools will be XML based.  Already, XML is required for
> using the Website DTD and other nifty gadgets for munging DocBook.
> His comment about it being easy to port documents is _precisely_ what
> we've all been shouting about these past four months: When content is
> seperated from presentation, the content is immune to shifts in the
> presentation technology.  Conceptually, technical and software
> documents have not changed their structural requirements in 30 years
> (since the invention of structured programming), but now we want the
> flexibility of XML for data interchange.  To change a DocBook from
> SGML to XML really means adding the XML type declaration to the top,
> and then (the nasty part) getting out of the bad habit of section
> markers.
> Now, the translation stage is where it gets weird.  Our ldp.dsl is
> thrown to the scrap heap with the Atari and openjade becomes a thing
> of the past (I believe) ... in fact, it is not clear to me just how
> you do the presentation stage in XML; all I know is that it requires
> XSL stylesheets which superficially look exactly like XML files
> (because they are) and that confuses the H out of me already. I've
> been avoiding that can of worms as much as possible proving once again
> that if you snooze in this business, you lose in this business.

Regardless, the presentation aspects in ldp.dsl or any other customized
DSSSL stylesheet can be (or will need to be) carried over into any
kind of XSL implementation...unless we use some default styles.

There needs to be an underlying tranformation engine as well. Whether
openjade or something else, we would have to look into that. For
example, how would one create a pdf instance from only an XML doc
instance and a set of XSL styelsheets? You need to have a tranformation
engine. In the case of online viewing many web browsers become that
engine by taking the raw XML and the styelsheet and doing the
transformation. I believe the 5.x generation of major web browsers
have some of this capability built-in.


Greg Ferguson     - s/w engr / mtlhd         | gferg@sgi.com
SGI Tech Pubs     - http://techpubs.sgi.com  | 
Linux Doc Project - http://www.linuxdoc.org  |

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