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Subject: DOCBOOK-APPS: A perspective on DocBook and DSSSL


I have managed to get DocBook/DSSSL to do a lot of the things I want, and
wonder if XSLT or other approaches will be better for me?

I now have some 300+ pages of course notes done (more to go) with lots of
PDF diagrams from Dia and screen shots.

I have separate title pages for each chapter/section with a black block
with a white section number on it, with branding graphics on the front page
of each section.

I have a separate title page for the book, with everything starting on the
correct pages.

I have headers and footers with underbars and over bars mostly working,
with different footers on recto and verso pages so that you can read the
string across the spine of book when it is layed open.

I have reasonable things on the front pages and so on.

However, there are some frustrations as well.

I have problems in the headers and footers which appear to be related to
TeX/JadeTeX interactions. Sometimes they just do funny things.

I also want rotated text on title pages, and don't understand how to do it.

I want to use multiple columns or tables on title pages so I can align
graphics and text with each other.

I do not understand enough about the whole DSSSL grove layout and how to
retrieve objects from the tree so I can do interesting things.

I do not understand yet how to maintain version numbers of documents
automatically? I want to keep the source in CVS and tag each new version
with version number and want that built automatically into the document.
Some of this can be done with CVS tags and replacements etc.

So, I wonder if I can do all this easily with XSL?

I also wonder what the learning curve is?

Richard Sharpe, sharpe@ns.aus.com
Samba (Team member, www.samba.org), Ethereal (Team member, www.ethereal.com)
Contributing author, SAMS Teach Yourself Samba in 24 Hours
Author, Special Edition, Using Samba

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